Plenty of Blame for Collapsing Fish Stocks

yellow-fin-tuna-catch-galapagosBy Stephen Leahy

SAN DIEGO, California, Feb 4 (IPS) – Climate change, pollution and overfishing have left the oceans in crisis, experts agree. Now a new study reveals that every national government with a fishing fleet has dramatically failed to manage fisheries in a responsible manner.

A detailed survey of the 53 countries that land 96 percent of the world’s marine catch shows that all have failed to comply with the U.N. Food and Agriculture Organisation’s Code of Conduct for Responsible Fisheries. Developed in 1995, the 53 fishing nations all agreed to comply with the code as a potential rescue measure for the world’s fisheries.

And while countries claimed to comply, in fact not one is in full compliance, according the detailed analysis reported in the science journal Nature Wednesday.

I’m confident we would have turned the corner on the collapsing fish stocks had countries complied with the code,” said Tony Pitcher of the University of British Columbia in Vancouver, Canada, one of the study co-authors. Continue reading