Australia's Out-Dated Concern over Fishing Threatens Wise Marine Conservation and Ecologically Sustainable Seafood Supply

Robert Kearney

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Abstract

Seafood plays an important role in human nutrition and its increased consumption is actively recommended for suste-nance and health benefits in both developing and developed countries. In parallel to this, the public receives confusing advice as to what seafood is sustainably produced and is frequently misled about the environmental impacts of fishing, especially in locations such as Australia where contemporary fishery management has a conservation and sustainability focus. It is recognised globally that Australia’s traditional fishery management driven by strict sustainability and biodi-versity regulations, has achieved impressive results in managing both fish stocks and the effects of fishing on marine environments. Despite this, continued pressure from non-government organisations (NGOs) and a perpetuation of the misuse of management terms such as “overfished” is used to promote the misguided need for ever increasing fishing restrictions, most obviously in “protected areas”. This paper questions the motives of some NGOs and governments in Australia in pursuing additional restrictions on fishing which are mostly unnecessary and disproportionate to the sus-tainability requirements of other sources of food. This is done within the context of the global need for ustainable sea-food supply and the need for effective marine conservation that addresses all threats to marine ecosystems in proportion to the magnitude of each threat.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)55-61
Number of pages7
JournalOpen Journal of Marine Science
Volume3
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2013

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