2011 is a critical year for the protection of life like the Roundnose Grenadier from deep-sea fishing on the high seas.
This year, the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA), for the first time ever, will conduct an open review of regional and national actions to protect deep-sea species and ecosystems on the high seas from the harmful impacts of bottom fishing. The review will specifically assess the extent to which UNGA resolutions adopted over the past seven years have been implemented by high seas fishing nations and regional fisheries management organizations (RFMOs).
WWF are supporting the Deep Sea Coalitions campaign to tell the UN that:
- While progress has been made in identifying and protecting some vulnerable marine ecosystems, measures taken to date are far from comprehensive;
- Assessments of fishing activities have not been completed for the majority of bottom fisheries; and
- Deep-sea fisheries for many species remain unregulated.
- High seas fishing States are, with few exceptions, failing to live up to the provisions of UNGA resolutions 61/105 and 64/72. As a result, vulnerable deep-sea life continues to be overexploited and vulnerable marine ecosystems are being lost.
We are calling on States fishing in areas where the UN resolutions have not been fully implemented to cease bottom fishing, as is required by resolution 64/72, until effective measures consistent with the resolutions are adopted and implemented. Any continued fishing should be considered illegal, unregulated or unreported and appropriate enforcement action should be taken against such vessels and the States to whom they are flagged.