Policy

Pew is a leader in promoting solutions that would preserve the biological integrity of marine ecosystems. We work to protect marine ecosystems, primarily focusing on efforts to curb overfishing, reduce bycatch and prevent the destruction of marine habitat.

Marine life is threatened by human activity and has become more endangered than ever before. A recent study in the journal Science found that over the centuries humans have caused the depletion of 90 percent of the ocean’s large predators, the elimination of 65 percent of seagrass and wetland habitat, the degradation of water quality 10- to 1,000-fold, and the acceleration of species invasions in 12 major estuaries and coastal seas around the world.

In 2003, the Pew Oceans Commission released the first recommendations in more than a generation aimed at guiding the way in which the federal government will manage the U.S marine environment. The commission recommended

  • improving the management of the nation’s commercial fisheries;
  • establishing networks of marine reserves in coastal waters;
  • increasing the involvement of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers in environmental restoration;
  • applying strong environmental standards to fish farms; and
  • regulating the discharge of waste by cruise ships.

We seek to ensure that the National Marine Fisheries Service and the regional fishery management councils comply with federal laws related to the protection of the nation’s fisheries and other living marine resources, including marine mammals, birds and invertebrates. Internationally, we address the impacts of overfishing and whaling.

Our work also includes the Marine Aquaculture Task Force, which brings together scientific, regulatory, business, and policy-making experts to evaluate key issues related to regulating aquaculture operations in marine waters.

  • International Commission for the Conservation of Atlantic Tunas (ICCAT)

    The 17th Special Meeting of ICCAT occurs November 17-27, 2010 in Paris, France. ICCAT is a fisheries body that manages approximately 30 species of fish – including tuna, sharks and billfish – caught in the Atlantic Ocean. At the November meeting, Pew is calling for immediate protection of Atlantic bluefin tuna, critical conservation management for sharks and the reduction of illegal fishing.
  • Pew Oceans Commission

    In 2003, the Pew Oceans Commission released a host of recommendations aimed at guiding the way in which the federal government can successfully manage America’s marine environment.
  • UN Ocean Issues

    The United Nations (UN) and its various processes and organizations plays a crucial role in ensuring the sustainability of marine fisheries, particularly for those in areas beyond national jurisdiction.

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