Working to improve international agreements to protect bluefin tuna and to take effective action in work for global tuna conservation.
Ranging far and wide across the oceans, tuna are found throughout the world, generally in tropical and temperate waters. Not only are these fish commercially important—they are also critical to the well-being of our oceans and the millions of people who depend on the greater marine ecosystem for food and economic stability.
Unfortunately, many populations are in decline —making the need for sustainable global tuna fisheries clearer than ever before.
The huge demand for tuna—as a popular ingredient in sushi and tuna steaks, and as mass produced, affordable canned fish across much of Europe, Asia, and the United States—has resulted in overfishing and mismanagement of many tuna species. Destructive fishing practices endanger not only the health of fish stocks, but also the livelihoods of approximately 450 million people—and the food security of some three billion people.
Pew is working to improve the international management of tuna species by
- promoting science-based catch limits that do not allow overfishing;
- minimizing the impacts of destructive fishing gears;
- eliminating illegal, unreported, and unregulated (IUU) fishing;
- increasing the transparency and accountability of tuna regional fisheries management organizations.
Read more about Pew's Pacific tuna work.
Read more about Pew's bluefin tuna work in the Gulf of Mexico.
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On May 26, commercial purse seine vessels will begin fishing in the Mediterranean Sea for Atlantic bluefin tuna. If recent history is any indication, most countries will catch their quota in days, and a majority of those tuna will be transferred to at-sea pens called ranches, where they will be fattened before being sold. There will be one noticeable difference this season from previous years,... Read More
Ahead of Critical International Meetings, the U.S. Should Not Promote Consumption of Highly Depleted Pacific Bluefin
As one of the world’s largest fishing nations, the United States has an important role and responsibility in sustainably managing its fisheries in domestic waters and on the high seas. While the U.S. has rebuilt many fish populations within its waters and contributes to better international management of fisheries, the recent guidance on Pacific bluefin calls into question its commitment to... Read More
Managing tuna fisheries successfully is a complicated task. These fish populations extend beyond man-made borders and through international waters, making regional decision-making critical to effective management. The United Nations Fish Stocks Agreement (UNFSA) has been in force since 2001 and requires countries to cooperate on the management of shared fish stocks like tuna. They typically do... Read More