About every ten years the Magnuson-Stevens Fisheries Management Act is reauthorized. It’s time to revisit the primary law governing conservation and management of U.S. ocean fisheries. The heavy lifting for legislators of today’s Congress is to direct more money, not less, to the nation’s eight fisheries councils to spend on responsible management of fish populations and savvy stewardship of ocean places.
We invite you to make a donation to assist us in making ocean fish and sustainable fisheries a national issue. Wild fish in the sea and sustainable local seafood are much more than regional issues involving a minority of the states.
Why more federal funding? Because beginning in 2016, federal funding of observers on fishing vessels will run and fishermen are being mandated by government to pick up the costs for something more in the public interest (good science) than theirs.
Why more federal funding? Federal funds were spent observing haddock encountering a trawl net. Haddock swim with flounder and cod. As the net set about them, haddock swam to one side or the other, to evade the net. The cod and flounder swam down towards the bottom. By modifying their gear and their practices fishermen are now sustainably fishing haddock with much less bycatch and incidental take of flounder and cod.
Why more federal funding? Because since 2000, 34 depleted fish populations have been rebuilt. The number of fish stocks subjected to overfishing (the problem of fish populations in specific ocean areas being fished faster than they can reproduce) has decreased from 72 fish stocks to 28.
Why more federal funding? Because only 28 fish populations in American waters are in trouble. That’s about 10% of 232 American commercially valuable fish stocks, the rest are being sustainably fished with some growing in abundance to optimum populations and most already at the optimum population given their habitats.
Why more federal funding? Because it’s a step towards achieving the Paris Agreement. Eating seafood as locally sourced as possible is also a way to reduce carbon emissions when compared to meat and also compared to vegetables transported more than 1,000 miles or from foreign lands.
With your donation and many informed voices in concert, it should be only a matter of time, money and work before America has sustainable fisheries in all American waters for all fish populations.
Thanks for all the fishes.