Finding Sustainability: Recommendations to the 82nd Meeting of the Inter-American Tropical Tuna Commission (IATTC)
At the 82nd meeting of the Inter-American Tropical Tuna Commission (IATC ), the Pew Environment Group calls on the IATTC Contracting Parties (CPs) to take the following critical actions:
Responsible Operation of Regional Fisheries Management Organizations (RFMOs)
- Enhance the IATTC's accountability scheme to ensure compliance with conservation measures.
- Apply the precautionary approach to management, as mandated by the Antigua Convention.
- Undergo an independent performance review.
Best Practices for Tuna Management
- Take steps to reduce vessel capacity.
- Call on the IATTC scientific staff to:
- Recommend scientifically based catch limits for skipjack, yellowfin and bigeye tuna that incorporate the catch of nontarget juvenile tuna in fisheries where fish aggregating devices (FADs) are used.
- Develop limits on the number of FADs allowed in the eastern tropical Pacific Ocean.
- Develop an inventory and track all FADs.
Conservation Measures to Protect Sharks
- Prohibit the retention of silky and oceanic whitetip sharks, as well as the biologically vulnerable and easily identifiable bigeye thresher and hammerhead sharks.
- Update the existing resolution on sharks (C-05-03) to require the immediate release of all live sharks caught as bycatch.
- Increase bycatch mitigation efforts to reduce the catch of sharks by longline fleets, specifically banning the use of wire leaders (traces) by this fishery.
- Prohibit the removal of shark fins at sea to improve enforcement of the sharkfinning ban and facilitate collection of species-specific catch data.
- Direct the scientific and technical committees to utilize ecological risk.