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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Last January, the new year started for Pacific bluefin tuna in its usual fashion—with a ceremonial auction of the year’s first catch at Tokyo’s Tsukiji Market. The winning bidder paid US$70,000 for that first fish, well above market value but a fraction of the US$1.7 million that the same person paid for the first bluefin of 2013. Read More
The world’s largest tuna fishing grounds will remain under threat from unsustainable management after members of the Western and Central Pacific Fisheries Commission (WCPFC) delayed action on new conservation measures, according to The Pew Charitable Trusts. Read More
For centuries, fishermen have known that tuna and other species form large schools under floating objects, whether natural or man-made. Industrial tuna fishing crews utilize this knowledge to construct specialized fish aggregating devices, or FADs, which make it easier to find and catch fish. Read More