‘Destructive fishing’ a new expert-driven definition

‘Destructive fishing’ a new expert-driven definition

A new and much-needed working definition of ‘destructive fishing’ has successfully been drafted following a rigorous consultation process involving 80 fisheries experts from over 30 countries.

Many policies and international frameworks – including the UN Sustainable Development Goals – recognise the need to end destructive fishing practices to conserve marine resources, protect the ocean and ensure peace and prosperity for people and the planet. However, despite its widespread use, “destructive fishing” is currently undefined and therefore immeasurable.

The vagueness of the term has rendered it a quasi-concept, undermining the ability to develop and implement effective solutions. Lead author, Dr Arlie McCarthy, explains: “We cannot measure progress towards reducing destructive fishing practices without knowing what counts as ‘destructive fishing’.”

The working definition, which has been described in a paper published in Conservation Letters, provides a consensus-led draft for leaders to build upon in international policy discussions, and will meaningfully support countries to prohibit destructive fishing practices.

PDF, 629.96 Kb


Collaboration / Project(s)

Defining and Measuring “Destructive Fishing” in Support of Achieving SDG14 – Life Below Water

Fisheries as a practice, and the pressures these activities place on fish populations, other marine species and marine ecosystems are incredibly diverse in nature. As such, a diversity of approaches are required to overcome the challenges faced and aid transitions to more sustainable and environmentally friendly practices. This project aims for a greater shared understanding…