Sustainable Fishing - Latin America

A new way of fishing

Conservation challenges in sustainable fisheries in Latin America and the Caribbean are great and vast in term of the complexity and importance and impacts to economies and marine ecosystems throughout the region.

Latin American and Caribbean oceans and coastal ecosystems include: the Eastern Pacific Ocean (EPO), the Southeast Pacific Ocean, the Southwest Atlantic Ocean and the Greater Caribbean Sea.

As vast and biologically diverse these oceans are, four key regional fisheries are central for WWF marine conservation objectives at the local, regional and global scales. These are:

  1. The tuna fishery in the Eastern Pacific Ocean (EPO)
  2. The Peruvian/Chilean anchovy fishery
  3. The southern ocean tooth-fish and squid fisheries
  4. The shrimp and lobster fisheries.

Short sighted economic vision and enormous fishing pressure upon the rich marine resources targeted are driving them to economic, biological and ecological collapse, if the very nature of the fishery is not transformed soon.

WWF's work

WWF Latin America and The Caribbean (LAC) Fisheries Program has the technical and political capacity to engage in transforming these fisheries toward sustainability, changing the essence of values of management and business systems.

Our work, experience and capacity are built around tuna fisheries conservation in the EPO, mostly gained at the Inter-American Tropical Tuna Commission (IATTC) political and technical arena. It also includes the efforts to promote sustainable fisheries in the marine eco-regions and the tuna long-line by-catch on marine turtles program.

At the dawn of a new era of challenges in marine and fisheries conservation, our team is ready to fully engage into the Smart Fishing Network Initiative. Over the years, we have built trust-based working relationships with governments, fishing industry and other important stakeholders in all major fisheries. Because of positive outcomes of our programs, the fishing industry has come to see WWF as a key partner to achieve sustainable fisheries.

 / ©: Carlos Miguel Imbach
Long line fishing vessel near Puntarenas, Costa Rica
© Carlos Miguel Imbach

One of the first steps towards sustainable fisheries is to cleanse fisheries of their ecological footprint, and in this process, a simple technological transformation can contribute immensely to the conservation of the ocean.

Moises Mug - Fisheries Senior Program Officer

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