French government special envoy for the planet calls on French Fisheries Minister to support
phase-out of deep-sea bottom trawling and bottom gillnet fishing
17 April 2013 At the conference on high seas governance organized by the French Consultative Assembly (The “CESE”,Economic, Social and Environmental Council) on April 11 in Paris, Mr.Nicolas Hulot,recently named “Special Envoy for the Protection of the Planet” by French President François Hollande, called on France to “take action” and urged French FisheriesMinister, Mr. Frédéric Cuvillier, to put an end to deep-sea fishing,which he called “an ecological and economic nonsense”, typical of a “wasteful civilization”.
EU's Damanaki calls for high seas biodiversity protection treaty
15 April 2013 An updated U.N. treaty governing the exploitation of deep-sea bioresources is urgently needed, EU Maritime Affairs Commissioner Maria Damanaki says.
Scientists call for larger ocean reserves
15 April 2013 Leading international marine scientists have called for the protection of more, large marine wilderness areas in a bid to shield the world’s dwindling stocks of fish from destruction.
William Shatner Teams Up With Greenpeace to Protect the “Grand Canyons of the Sea”
4 April 2013 Greenpeace has launched a new video featuring the voice of William Shatner calling for the North Pacific Marine Fisheries Council to protect the Bering Sea canyons from industrial fishing.
Hagfish slime: The clothing of the future?
2 April 2013 The jawless, spineless hagfish is a primitive creature that lives at the bottom of the ocean and dates back as far as 500 million years - but it exudes a very special slime, which could provide the clothing of the future.
Mislabelled fish slip into Europe's menus
2 April 2013 Official figures show that global consumption of fish and seafood per person is rising steeply - but research also reveals that much of what gets sold turns out to be not as described on the packet.
In Hot Water: Global Warming Has Accelerated In Past 15 Years, New Study Of Oceans Confirms
25 March 2013 A new study of ocean warming has just been published in Geophysical Research Letters. One of several important conclusions which can be drawn from this paper is that global warming has accelerated, with more overall global warming in the past 15 years than the prior 15 years, with about 90% going into heating the oceans.
Overfished and under-protected: Oceans on the brink of catastrophic collapse
24 March 2013 As the human footprint has spread, the remaining wildernesses on our planet have retreated. However, dive just a few meters below the ocean surface and you will enter a world where humans very rarely venture.
European Parliament's Environment Committee votes overwhelmingly for reform of EU deep-sea fisheries management while the Fisheries Committee decides to stall the process
22 March 2013 On Wednesday the Environment Committee of the European Parliament overwhelmingly voted in favour of total reform of the EU's deep-sea fishing Regulation by 58 votes to one. The vote by the Environment Committee, based on a proposal from Member of European Parliament (MEP) Anna Rosbach, would establish a rigorous science based process to setting quotas to fish deep-sea species, prevent the bycatch of the most vulnerable deep-sea species, require prior impact assessments for all deep-sea bottom fisheries, and phase-out deep-sea bottom trawl fishing and bottom gillnet fishing.
Public worldwide supports ocean sustainability
19 March 2013 A large majority of global citizens believe governments must take the needs of future generations into account when they set rules governing the global ocean, according to a survey conducted in 13 countries across the world on behalf of the Global Ocean Commission.
High rates of microbial carbon turnover in sediments in the deepest oceanic trench on Earth
17 March 2013 The deepest place in the ocean is teeming with microscopic life, a study suggests. An international team of scientists found that the very bottom of the Mariana Trench, which lies almost 11km (7 miles) down in the Pacific Ocean, had high levels of microbial activity.
'Too late' for Govt to vote on saving seabed
8 March 2013 The New Zealand government says it was "too late" to vote to protect deep ocean habitats from the threat of seabed mining because it had already issued prospecting and exploration permits.
Shell to suspend Arctic offshore drilling program over safety fears
28 February 2013 Oil company will 'pause' exploration off Alaska's northern coasts over concerns for equipment and employees
Interpol initiative aims to batter fisheries crime
27 February 2013 A new international initiative to crack down on illegal fishing practices is set to be launched later today.
Can new technology save fish?
25 February 2013 A technological revolution is needed for Europe to end the controversial practice of discarding fish, according to the EU’s fisheries commissioner. The Rollerball net is a recent arrival which runs over the seabed on what look like beach-balls. It is said to reduce damage and drag of a trawl by between 11 and 16%, and there are hopes for further improvements.
The Deep Sea - A European Perspective
23 February 2013 The Fisheries Committee of the European Parliament held a special hearing this week to consider proposals to reform deep sea fishing. Oceans inc's Charlotte Smith reports from Brussels on efforts to clean up what is widely seen as the most destructive type of fishing in the ocean.
Deepest undersea vents discovered by UK team
23 February 2013 UK scientists exploring the ocean floor in the Caribbean have discovered an "astounding" set of hydrothermal vents, the deepest anywhere in the world. Deploying a remotely-operated vehicle (ROV) in the Cayman Trough, they stumbled across a previously-unknown site nearly 5000m below the surface.
Fish Fight renews campaign to protect the seabed
14 February 2013 Damaging fishing methods and a lack of marine protected zones are being targeted by a renewed campaign to protect the world's dwindling fish stocks, spearheaded by food writer Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall.
The Arctic - Tequila Sunset
9 February 2013 Global warming may make the northernmost ocean less productive, not more so.
DSCC urges South Pacific RFMO to make measures consistent with bottom fishing resolutions
30 January 2013 The DSCC this week urged the South Pacific Regional Fisheries Management Organisation (RFMO) to make agreed measures consistent with bottom fishing resolutions. Representing 70 NGOs, the DSCC is an attendance at the first Commission meeting since the Convention entered into force last year in Auckland, New Zealand.
Chile Becomes First Country to Protect All Seamounts From Bottom Trawling
14 January 2013 The Government and National Congress of Chile have overhauled their fishing laws by banning bottom trawling in all vulnerable marine ecosystems (including all seamounts in Chile), requiring the implementation of reduction plans for bycatch and discards of ocean species, and ensuring that fishing quotas are based on science rather than politics.
Hong Kong's trawling ban is big step to sustainable fishery
5 January 2013 Limited restrictions and a ravenous appetite for seafood have led to the fishing industry harvesting a greater catch than is sustainable. Fish stocks are in crisis, the marine environment dangerously stressed and fleet restructuring urgently needed. The ban is a first, but giant, step in that direction.
Australian scientists discover deep sea corals
3 January 2013 Australian scientists mapping the Great Barrier Reef have discovered corals at depths never before thought possible, with a deep-sea robot finding specimens in waters nearly as dark as night.
China's Hunger for Fish Upsets Seas
27 December 2012 China's growing hunger for seafood is testing relations with other countries and worrying foreign officials and scientists over the potential damage its massive fleet could do to global fishing stocks.
Bottom trawl bans adopted in Chile and Ecuador
21 December 2012 The new Fisheries Law adopted by Chile’s Congress this week requires a ban on bottom trawling on all seamounts and other vulnerable marine ecosystems in Chile’s waters according to DSCC member organizations Greenpeace and Oceana.
Chatham Rock moves nearer to mining
19 December 2012 Plans to mine rock phosphate from the Chatham Rise took another step forward with €4 million to be spent on a final detailed design of a system to extract the rock from under the sea.
Ecuador prohíbe la pesca de arrastre
16 December 2012 Para los barcos que abandonan la actividad de arrastre se barajan otras alternativas de pesca de anguilas, merluzas, bacalao y pelágicos pequeños. Otro grupo de naves será dado de baja.
Papua New Guinea sea floor mining project in jeopardy
12 December 2012 Dispute between country and Nautilus Minerals may result in scrapping of plan to mine copper and gold from Bismarck Sea
Pollutants released by seafloor trawling affect marine life
6 December 2012 Recent findings from a Norwegian fjord show how mussels can take up high levels of contaminants released by trawling, with important health implications for consumers.
Disappointing rise in quotas for deep sea species announced today
29 November 2012 The DSCC is disappointed with the outcome of the meeting of the Council of Fisheries Ministers today on setting quotas for deep-sea species fished by EU fleets in the Northeast Atlantic. Matthew Gianni gives his reaction.
Marine 'treasure trove' could bring revolution in medicine and industry
20 November 2012 Scientists have pinpointed a new treasure trove in our oceans: micro-organisms that contain millions of previously unknown genes and thousands of new families of proteins. These tiny marine wonders offer a chance to exploit a vast pool of material that could be used to create innovative medicines, industrial solvents, chemical treatments and other processes, scientists say.
Key Atlantic Fisheries Body Falls Short in Protecting the Deep Sea
16 November 2012 The North-East Atlantic Fisheries Commission (NEAFC) annual meeting concluded today in London. NEAFC, which regulates 5.6 million square kilometres of the high seas from the Arctic to northern Africa, had committed to use the year since its last meeting to review all the deep sea-related regulations the Commission had adopted over the past several years.
Deep sea miners terminate pioneering project
13 November 2012 Controversial deep-sea mining company Nautilus Minerals is “terminating the construction” of its flagship project off the coast of Papua New Guinea and laying off staff, it said today.
Scraping the sea floor smooth
22 October 2012 According to a new study published in Nature, trawlers are doing more than catching fish. Because they drag huge, heavy nets across the ocean floor, they are reshaping the bottom contours of the busiest fishing grounds. By disturbing sediment, they are, in essence, smoothing out the sea bottom and reducing its value as habitat. This is occurring, the authors say, not just on relatively shallow continental shelves, but on continental slopes as well.
Deep-sea sharks targeted in craze for omega-3
9 October 2012 Fish oil supplements have been hailed as the latest weapon in the battle to ward off disease. However, the soaring demand for omega-3 capsules is putting deep-sea sharks in peril, warn conservationists.
Use of predictive habitat modelling to assess the distribution and extent of the current protection of ‘listed’ deep-sea habitats
8 October 2012 Predictive habitat modelling may provide a useful method of better estimating the extent of listed habitats, providing direction for future MPA establishment and a means of assessing MPA network effectiveness against politically set percentage targets.
L'échec de l'Europe à réguler la pêche en eau profonde
4 October 2012 La gestion européenne de la pêche en eaux profondes est "désastreuse" : telle est la conclusion d'une étude que vient de publier la revue Ocean & Coastal Management.
European fleets flouting deep sea fishing quotas, study finds
3 October 2012 Call to reform fisheries policy over stock collapse concerns as data reveals some fleets exceed 28 times their allowed limit.
Ocean acidification emerges as new climate threat
1 October 2012 In the past five years, the fact that human-generated carbon emissions are making the ocean more acidic has become an urgent cause of concern to the fishing industry and scientists.
Lots of talk no action
21 September 2012 NAFO debates but fails to deliver deep sea protection. Ignoring new scientific evidence about the extent of fragile coral systems within their waters and a range of international commitments, the 34th annual meeting of the Northwest Atlantic Fisheries Organization (NAFO) closed today in St Petersburg, Russia without adopting any significant deep sea safeguard.
Cold-Water Corals and Their Newfound Importance
20 September 2012 Cold-water corals are found all over the world, at a variety of depths. Recent research may give us reason to pursue the classification of cold-water corals as an essential fish habitat.
Deep Sea Trawling Devastates Shipwrecks of “Alien Deep”
16 September 2012 On September 16th, National Geographic Channel aired “Alien Deep” featuring Dr. Bob Ballard and his expeditions on the E/V Nautilus. They interviewed one of the chief scientists from the show and expedition leader Dr. Mike Brennan to get to the bottom of one of the major threats to the future of ocean exploration: mobile fishing gear or bottom trawls.
Titanic explorer: Ancient shipwrecks lost to trawlers
14 September 2012 Lost in a Black Sea tempest, the ancient shipwreck waited 2,300 years to be discovered. And it took the swipe of just one passing trawler for the secrets held in the bones of its long-drowned crew to be lost forever. The sad tale of the shipwreck called Eregli E, found in 2011 by a team led by Titanic explorer Robert Ballard, will be told in a National Geographic Channel documentary, Wrecks of the Abyss.
Call to freeze fishing in Europe to replenish stocks
14 September 2012 A think tank has made a controversial case for freezing fishing in Europe, saying most fish stocks would return to sustainable levels within five years. The London-based New Economics Foundation (Nef) argues in its report that the suspension would generate billions of pounds in profits by 2023.
Fish trawling reshapes deep-sea canyons
5 September 2012 Deep-sea trawling smooths out the wrinkles of canyons on the continental slope, making marine mountainsides look more like ploughed fields, changing the habitat of deep-sea creatures. The process rivals landslides and storms as a shaper of the deep sea, according to work published today in Nature1.
Fishing venture turns up all kinds of weird deep-sea sharks
15 August 2012 A two-month fishing expedition to the Indian Ocean has turned up hundreds of strange deep-sea sharks, and several are likely new to science.
El Ministerio de Agricultura, Alimentación y Medio Ambiente debe apoyar la protección de las aguas profundas europeas
25 July 2012 Los grupos miembros de la Deep Sea Conservation Coalition piden que el Secretario General de Pesca, Carlos Domínguez, reconsidere su oposición a la nueva propuesta legislativa publicada por la Comisión Europea (CE) el 18 de julio para gestionar la pesca en aguas profundas.
Orange roughy could end up on CITES threatened list
24 July 2012 The US Government is considering classifying orange roughy as threatened and making the recommendation to the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES). The classification would mean tighter restrictions on the fishing of the species.
DSCC Hails Landmark Proposal to Phase Out Deep-Sea Bottom Trawling in Northeast Atlantic
19 July 2012 The Deep Sea Conservation Coalition (DSCC) today welcomed the proposal by the European Commission to phase out destructive deep-sea bottom trawling and bottom gillnetting by EU fishing fleets in the Northeast Atlantic.
French Circumventing Democratic Process in Attempt to Scupper Deep Sea Protection
18 July 2012 The French Government is attempting to derail democratic debate on deep-sea conservation within the European Union in an apparent attempt to protect France’s minority fishing interests, including the French supermarket chain Intermarché, owner of several large-scale deep-sea trawlers.
French scupper law to protect British sea bed
15 July 2012 THE destruction of Britain’s sea beds by largely foreign-owned fishing fleets is to continue after the French blocked a potential EU ban on deep-sea bottom trawling.
Barnier s’est comporté en VRP d’Intermarché
13 July 2012 Vendredi, à Bruxelles, ce devait être le coup d’envoi du projet élaboré par la commissaire à la Pêche, Maria Damanaki, et discuté depuis des mois, prévoyant, pour protéger les grands fonds marins, une suppression progressive du chalutage profond. Mais, jeudi soir, le commissaire français au Marché intérieur, Michel Barnier, a bloqué la validation du projet in extremis. Il n’a pas donné d’explications officielles, mais, vendredi, il expliquait à Libération qu’il avait voulu stopper une «mesure qui allait supprimer des centaines d’emplois parmi les marins pêcheurs». Fondatrice de l’association Bloom, qui milite pour la conservation marine et donc contre la pêche en eaux profondes, Claire Nouvian revient sur les enjeux de la réforme.
UE: un projet d'interdiction du chalutage profond bloqué par Barnier
12 July 2012 BRUXELLES - Un projet de la Commission européenne de suppression progressive du chalutage en eaux profondes a été bloqué jeudi à la dernière minute sur pression du commissaire français Michel Barnier, a-t-on appris de sources proches de l'exécutif européen.
Greenpeace explores underwater canyons, calls for their protection
12 July 2012 Greenpeace has returned to the world's largest underwater canyons, in the Bering Sea, to continue efforts to protect these amazing ecosystems.
Away from Rio, a Big Victory for a Small Conservation Group
25 June 2012 While world leaders in Rio were casting adrift an imperiled planet, an impassioned young Frenchwoman forced a giant supermarket chain to stop pretending that its bottom-fishing trawler fleet was safeguarding the future of fish. Claire Nouvian's non-profit, Bloom, is part of the Deep Sea Conservation Coalition, which made some waves in Rio.
Major European retailer slammed for false sustainable fish claims
21 June 2012 Today in a landmark ruling that should signal the end of a hugely destructive commercial fishing practice, France's advertising authority, ARPP, ruled that the French supermarket giant Intermarché must pull all advertisements that claim its deep-sea fish are sustainably caught.
Ocean campaigners bring their message to the public at the People's Summit
20 June 2012 While heads of state and government officials began meetings at Rio centro for the first day of the Rio+20 summit, across the other side of town by the sea, ocean campaigners brought their message of the need for better ocean protection to the public at the People's Summit.
No Commitment to the High Seas
19 June 2012 Members of the High Seas Alliance (HSA) were profoundly disappointed by the decision to delay action on high seas protection in the conference text, despite some more promising measures to improve ocean health.
Plundering the new wild west
18 June 2012 Richard Branson and his colleagues in the group of Ocean Elders, global leaders who have teamed up to use their influence to promote ocean conservation, will be urging heads of state and high-level government envoys at Rio +20 to draw up a mandate that will oblige nations around the world to assume a far higher level of responsibility for the welfare of our oceans.
NGOs urge RIO+20 to back new treaty on oceans protection
17 June 2012 Non-governmental organizations on Sunday called on RIO+20 summit leaders to back a new treaty to protect the high seas. "A new Treaty for High Seas protection will be a game changer for the future of our ocean and the millions dependent on it for their survival," said members of the High Seas Alliance and the Deep Sea Conservation Coalition attending the UN conference on sustainable development.
Tratado para proteger biodiversidade em alto-mar é único ponto ainda sem acordo
17 June 2012 RIO — A expectativa de ver a Rio+20 dar passos importantes para a preservação dos oceanos está mais perto de se tornar realidade. Formalmente, o grupo de trabalho que prepara o documento acerca do tema continua aberto, mas negociadores que participam das reuniões dizem que talvez não haja sequer novos encontros. Praticamente todos os pontos que eram polêmica já foram superados, com exceção de um, justamente um dos mais importantes: a criação de um novo tratado para a conservação da biodiversidade em alto-mar.
Governments make 'pitiful' progress on oceans
15 June 2012 Little has been done to protect marine life since the 1992 Rio Earth Summit, conservation scientists conclude. On pledges to protect key habitat and restrict the size of fishing fleets, they say progress has been "pitiful". Their analysis is carried in the journal Science and is being discussed during final preparations for the Rio+20 summit, which opens next week.
World Oceans Day celebrated across the globe
8 June 2012 Applying science-based fisheries management in the 25 countries that control more than 75% of the globe’s fish stocks by curbing overfishing, protecting marine habitat and limiting bycatch will boost fish stocks enough that wild seafood could sustainably feed 700 million people per day.
Are the oceans on a collision course?
7 June 2012 Scientist Boris Worm says, "The loss of [oceanic] biodiversity continues at a pace that's not slowing down. On average, the condition of the oceans continues to get worse." Some positive management trends give cause for cautious hope - but not much.
High hopes for deep-sea mission
4 June 2012 Jiaolong, the manned submersible, could put China at the forefront of deep-sea exploration if attempts to dive to 7,000 meters are successful this month.
First Mission for New Ocean Floor Observatory
1 June 2012 GEOMAR installs MoLab on a cold water coral reef in the Norwegian Sea
Creatures dredged from the deep
31 May 2012 Hairy crabs, fanged worms and midget lobsters are the latest freakish lifeforms dredged up by scientists exploring the sea volcanos of the Kermadec Ridge. A three-week New Zealand expedition has returned with thousands of specimens, including deep-sea stalked barnacles that resemble "a stretched neck" and fearsome angler fish with deadly arrays of teeth.
UN Chief: World's oceans need greater protection
23 May 2012 “By taking action at the national, regional and global levels, including enhancing international cooperation, we can achieve the Aichi Biodiversity Target of conserving 10% of marine and coastal areas by 2020, a crucial step in protecting marine biodiversity for the future we want.” says UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon.
New means of safeguarding world fish stocks
23 May 2012 Powerful and versatile new genetic tools that will assist in safeguarding both European fish stocks and European consumers are reported in Nature Communications. The paper reports on the first system proven to identify populations of fish species to a forensic level of validation.
Stronger protection needed to save Antarctica's marine biodiversity
22 May 2012 WWF, as part of the Antarctic Ocean Alliance, unveiled a new vision for the creation of the world`s largest marine protected area across Antarctic marine habitats on International Day for Biological Diversity, 2012.
Fishing observers 'intimidated and bribed by EU crews'
18 May 2012 Quota checks allegedly being compromised aboard Northwest Atlantic Fishery boats, as observers report surveillance and theft.
New BBC documentary spotlights ICIJ probe into fish devastation
20 April 2012 As aggressive, unregulated fishing continues in the South Pacific, BBC World News has broadcast a documentary that features the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists’ recent probe into the plundering of jack mackerel, once one of the world’s most abundant fish.
Summary Report on BfN-IUCN Seminar on Areas beyond National Jurisdiction
15 April 2012 In December 2011, the German Federal Agency for Nature Conservation and the IUCN Environmental Law Centre jointly organized an international seminar on the "Conservation and Sustainable Use of Marine Biodiversity beyond National Jurisdiction". The workshop report is now available online.
Protecting Deep Seas on the High Seas
9 April 2012 How much progress the world is making in controlling “illegal” deep-sea fishing on the high seas depends on your perspective, Matthew Gianni of the Deep Sea Conservation Coalition told scientists at last week’s Fifth International Symposium on Deep-Sea Corals.
Fishery managers could call for a review of massive underwater canyons
3 April 2012 Fishery managers in the North Pacific are expected Tuesday to endorse a reassessment of how to treat two large underwater canyons in Alaska’s Bering Sea that lie near one of the nation’s most profitable fisheries. Environmentalists and some researchers have argued that part of the canyons should be placed off limits to fishing because little is known about them.
The age of Aquarius - Inner space is almost as hard to explore as outer space
31 March 2012 Ifremer, France’s oceanographic institute, is the first to have brought back samples from the deep sea alive, in its three-man craft, Nautile. It will be the first time members of the public have had a chance to behold such creatures alive.
James Cameron and the Dawn of Deep Truth?
29 March 2012 James Cameron’s historic Deep Challenger submersible descent into the Marianas Trench could signal a new era of independent deep sea surveillance and oversight.
Towards Rio Plus 20: The Way to Global Responsibility
28 March 2012 Maria Damanaki, EU Commissioner for Maritime Affairs and Fisheries, in her blog on Rio+20 says we need concrete actions across borders to achieve overarching objectives of the international community - such as biodiversity protection and the conservation and sustainable use of marine biological diversity in deep-sea areas, beyond national jurisdiction.
Exploring Our Own Alien World
26 March 2012 Exploration of the deep ocean will be just like the exploration of Mars — with one huge exception. We already know we are going to find life in the deep ocean, and lots of it.
James Cameron's Deep Sea Challenge: Titanic Director Surfaces After Reaching Mariana Trench
26 March 2012 James Cameron has returned to the surface after reaching Earth's deepest place - the Mariana Trench in the western Pacific. The Hollywood director ventured seven miles below the surface of the ocean in a specially constructed submarine called "Deepsea Challenger", which Cameron has described as "a vertical tornado."
BP oil spill seriously harmed deep-sea corals, scientists warn
26 March 2012 Evidence 'compelling' that explosion at Deepwater Horizon drilling rig in 2010 badly damaged colonies in the Gulf of Mexico
Structure-Forming Corals and Sponges and Their Use as Fish Habitat in Bering Sea Submarine Canyons
21 March 2012 Two of the largest underwater canyons in the world cut into the edge of the continental shelf in the southeastern Bering Sea. This highly productive area supports an abundance of fishes and squids as well as birds and marine mammals. Regulation of bottom trawling and other destructive practices is key to conservation of benthic habitats and the ecosystem services they provide.
Damage to world's oceans 'to reach $2 trillion a year'
21 March 2012 The cost of damage to the world's oceans from climate change could reach $2 trillion a year by 2100 if measures to cut greenhouse gas emissions are not stepped up.
What James Cameron Can Expect at the Bottom of the Ocean
20 March 2012 The race to the deepest point in the ocean – the Challenger Deep, 10,902* meters beneath the surface – is heating up. What will these new adventurers find? What sorts of alien critters might we expect to see in Cameron’s upcoming documentary? The short answer is that we don’t know.
France and Spain back down on fish discards after internet campaign
19 March 2012 France and Spain today backed down over a plan to carry on throwing dead fish overboard after an internet campaign organised by a television chef.
McMurdo Sound's toothfish population at risk
18 March 2012 A summer at Antarctica's McMurdo Sound has come up with the alarming finding for scientists - the region's population of toothfish shows signs of collapsing. Since commercial fishing of the top fish predator began in the late 1990s, the scientific catch in McMurdo Sound, home to US and New Zealand bases, has fallen 81 per cent in recent catch rates relative to the pre-commercial era.
European Maritime & Fisheries Fund will downsize EU fleets
1 March 2012 "Subsidising modernisation of fishing vessels and engine upgrading will not cut overcapacity but simply encourage over-exploitation of fish stocks." say Senior Vice President of EU Fisheries Committee.
Call for ban on Antarctic fishing
29 February 2012 A powerful coalition of conservation groups backed by entrepreneur Sir Richard Branson is calling for an Antarctic fishing ban within an area half the size of Australia.
Overfishing ‘costs £2.7bn and 100,000 jobs’
10 February 2012 Poor management of fish stocks is draining jobs and profits, according to a report by the New Economics Foundation.
Scientists find 'supergiant' from the deep
3 February 2012 From the depths of the Kermadec Trench, New Zealand scientists have retrieved the largest known examples of a creature that looks like a giant albino flea.
Pew urges reforms to deep-sea fishing regulations
26 January 2012 The European Commission is preparing to release its deep-sea access regime proposal before the end of the first quarter of 2012. In a new policy analysis, “Out of the Abyss: Transforming EU Rules to Protect the Deep Sea,” the Pew Environment Group offers viable solutions to ensure the sustainability and protection of threatened deep-sea biodiversity.
Underwater archaeology: Hunt for the ancient mariner
25 January 2012 The impact of bottom trawling is "devastating" for marine archeologists' says Robert Ballard, deep-sea explorer and the discoverer of the Titanic, in a news feature published today online by Nature
Cliffhanging corals avoid trawler damage
19 January 2012 Bottom trawling fishing boats have devastated many cold water coral reefs along the margin of the North East Atlantic Ocean. Now, researchers have found large cold water coral colonies clinging to the vertical and overhanging sides of submarine canyons 1350 metres below the surface of the Bay of Biscay.
Whole new marine ecology discoverd at deep water antarctic vents
6 January 2012 Oceanographers exploring some of the most remote deep-sea hot springs ever found have discovered what they say is a "riot of life" in a distinct biological zone that no one knew existed.
Deep-sea expedition documents damage to cold-water corals from bottom trawling in the Southwest Indian Ocean
9 December 2011 A team of scientists has set out on a six-week mission to explore the Indian Ocean's underwater mountains, or seamounts. In the fourth of her BBC Nature diary entries, Aurelie Spadone from IUCN witnesses the exploitation of the seamounts she is exploring.
UN RENEWS CALL FOR URGENT ACTION TO PROTECT LARGEST BIOSPHERE ON THE PLANET
6 December 2011 The United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) has today adopted a resolution on Oceans and Sustainable Fisheries which calls on high seas fishing nations to take stronger actions to protect deep sea life. Welcomed by the Deep Sea Conservation Coalition (DSCC), the resolution reinforces the conclusions of a report presented by the DSCC at a special UNGA meeting in September.
World's oceans in peril
16 November 2011 Climate change is causing our oceans to become increasingly acidic, threatening to alter life as we know it.
New Zealand hoki fishery enters re-assessment for MSC certification
15 November 2011 The Marine Stewardship Council (MSC) has welcomed a decision by the NZ hoki fishery to seek re-assessment under the MSC’s program for well-managed and sustainable fisheries.
Vital to break circle of destruction, says Damanaki
15 November 2011 IF there is no end to a damaging “vicious circle” hitting fish stocks, there will only be a handful of sustainable species left by 2022, Europe’s fisheries chief warned today.
NEAFC Protects Deep Sea Sharks but Falls Short for Other Species and Habitat
11 November 2011 The 30th annual meeting of the North East Atlantic Fisheries Commission ended with countries agreeing to prohibit fishing for deep-sea sharks but failing to agree on significant additional measures to safeguard vulnerable deep-sea species and ecosystems.
Deep-Sea Mountaineering Expedition Embarks
9 November 2011 International – A six-week long sea journey commenced earlier this week for marine biologists and scientists traveling on the RSS James Cook in the southern area of the Indian Ocean.
Expedition to underwater mountains
7 November 2011 Scientists are to explore underwater mountains in an expedition to study species on the seabed and understand the impacts of deep sea fishing on wildlife.
CCAMLR makes progress on illegal fishing and marine ecosystems protection in the Antarctic
4 November 2011 At its annual meeting in Hobart, Tasmania, the Commission for the Conservation of Antarctic Marine Living Resources adopted important measures to fight illegal, unreported and unregulated fishing, to develop Marine Protected Areas and to enhance the management of krill fisheries.
U.S. sued over Mid-Atlantic fisheries management
1 November 2011 Environmental organization Oceana is suing US National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s (NOAA) Fisheries Service for failing to set catch limits for non-target fish species in the Mid-Atlantic region.
Deep reef ‘twilight zones’ slowly yield their secrets to explorers
31 October 2011 In a series of expeditions, researcher Carole Baldwin and her team discovered a half-dozen new species of fish in the Caribbean this summer, exploring a little-studied twilight zone known as mesophotic, or “middle light,” reefs. Although more than 200 feet below the surface, these reefs resemble their colorful, shallow-water cousins.
Pillage in Deep Waters
28 October 2011 Deep-sea bottom fishing destroys the ocean floor and over-exploits vulnerable fish populations. Reforms are now in discussion in Brussels and at the United Nations. (NOTE: Article is in French)
Black Coral Jewelry Manufacturers Fined Millions for Smuggling
26 October 2011 For illegal trading in protected black coral, a U.S. Virgin Islands company was sentenced Wednesday to pay a $1.8 million criminal fine in federal court in St. Thomas.
Europe scraps automatic fish quota cut
21 October 2011 European commission drops proposals for an automatic cut to stocks without sufficient data
Bottom trawling fishing in Argentine-Uruguayan area banned
21 October 2011 Joint Technical Commission for Maritime Front establishes an area closed to bottom trawling in the Common Fishing Zone shared by Argentina and Uruguay.
EU subsidies finance coral gardens damaged by trawlers from Spain and France
18 October 2011 Deep-sea trawlers from mainland Europe are destroying diverse and fragile coral gardens off the northwest coast of the UK in an industry that is only possible thanks to EU subsidies, a new report has highlighted.
"Primary threat to the abyss is fishing" says president of the Institut Océanographique in Paris
13 October 2011 Deep-sea bottom trawling, using "factory vessels" destroys the ocean floor. We are over-exploiting species that have long lifespans and slow reproduction cycles, according to Michel Petit, president of France's Institut Océanographique. (NOTE: article is in French)
Industry, Enviros Gird for U.N. Battle Over Deep-Sea Trawling
12 October 2011 Conservationists and the international fishing industry are gearing up for another showdown over bottom trawling next month.
Turning the Tide on Deep-Sea Destruction
12 October 2011 The U.N. will meet again on November 11 to decide on next steps and work towards shaping another deep-sea conservation resolution to submit to the General Assembly. In the meantime, the clock is ticking for high-seas fishing countries to fully comply with measures to which they have already agreed.
NAFO falls short on deep-sea protections
23 September 2011 Group extends area closures, but fails to fully implement U.N. resolutions
Deep-sea species and ecosystems on the high seas remain at risk
16 September 2011 Two days of robust discussion at the United Nations demonstrated that deep-sea fishing countries and regional fisheries management organizations have not fully met commitments previously made, and many deep-sea species and ecosystems on the high seas remain at risk.
Scientists call for end to deep-sea fishing
7 September 2011 Industrial fishing in the deep sea should be banned because it has depleted fish stocks that take longer to recover than other species, according to a paper to be released this week by an international team of marine scientists.
Deep Sea Conservation Coalition calls for full and frank debate at the UN on the “unfinished business” of implementing commitments on deep-sea bottom fishing in the high seas
1 September 2011 Most high seas fishing States are falling far short of their international commitments to manage deep-sea fisheries in areas beyond national jurisdiction. The UN General Assembly workshop on September 15-16 will be key to addressing what must be done.
EU says most fuel efficient trawlers show the highest profits
10 August 2011 THE more fuel efficient the fishing vessel,the higher the profits - that is the view of a new European Commission report out recently.
Uncharted hydrothermal vents discovered on the Mid-Atlantic Ridge
5 August 2011 THE Irish-led VENTuRE scientific expedition aboard the national research vessel RV Celtic Explorer has discovered a previously uncharted field of hydrothermal vents along the Mid-Atlantic Ridge
New study - Man and the Last Great Wilderness: Human Impact on the Deep Sea
1 August 2011 The deep sea, the largest ecosystem on Earth and one of the least studied, harbours high biodiversity and provides a wealth of resources. The range of new challenges facing the deep sea, prompted by recent technological developments, is large and accelerating, providing a new imperative for the science community, industry and national and international organizations to work together.
Giant Undersea Volcanoes Found Off Antarctica
25 July 2011 A chain of giant, undersea volcanoes has been found off Antarctica, scientists say. All told a dozen previously unknown peaks were discovered beneath the waves—some up to 10,000 feet (3,000 meters) tall, according to the British Antarctic Survey.
A deep-sea, white coral reef has been discovered in the Alboran sea (Western Mediterranean) during Oceana Ranger’s 2011 expedition.
22 July 2011 Oceana estimates that the reef’s surface area may exceed 10 hectares and covers a large part of the surface of a seamount whose peak is located between 320 and 400 metres depth. The finding proves that there are still unexplored areas in this region that may harbour many more surprises.
21 July 2011 Hagfish, eel-like creatures known for secreting buckets of slime, are among the ocean’s most ancient species. They dwell on the ocean floor feeding on dead and dying sea life, filling an important ecological niche. Human activities, however, may be threatening their numbers and new research looks into the population decline of these shadowy creatures.
Letter from Spanish Minister to DSCC on new commitments in the South West Atlantic
13 July 2011 The Minister of the Environment, Rural and Marine Affairs for Spain sent a letter to the DSCC announcing a major new commitment to protecting deep-sea ecosystems in the South West Atlantic.
Recommendations of the Deep Sea Conservation Coalition To the United Nations Open-ended Informal Consultative Process on Oceans and the Law of the Sea (ICP)
21 June 2011 This week the DSCC is proposing recommendations to the United Nations, during the Open-ended Informal Consultative Process on Oceans and the Law of the Sea (ICP) meeting. The meeting is a significant opportunity for States to ensure that a strong outcome is sent to the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) and the UN Conference on Sustainable Development (UNCSD) to ensure that agreements on key oceans issues are made.
Sustainable fisheries highlighted in North Atlantic
14 June 2011 Faroe Islands Minister of Fisheries Johan Dahl hosted the 16th Annual Conference of the North Atlantic Fisheries Ministers in Torshavn, Faroe Islands last week. Issues discussed included the impacts of fisheries on marine ecosystems in the high seas and sustainable stock management across the globe.
A Strong Outcome at the 4th UN BBNJ Meeting
6 June 2011 Last week, the UN BBNJ meeting ended with a surprisingly good result. At the '11th hour', just 20 minutes before the UN interpreters had to finish for the day, a promising compromise was reached.
DSCC presents preliminary findings at UN General Assembly
2 June 2011 A United Nations (UN) meeting on oceans biodiversity will today hear how poorly high seas fishing nations have performed in implementing their commitments to ground breaking resolutions adopted in 2006 and 2009, designed to protect biodiversity in the deep sea.
NGOs Call on Spain to Close Areas of the High Seas in the
Southwest Atlantic to Bottom Trawl Fleets
25 May 2011 Greenpeace Spain, Ecologistas en Accion, the Pew Environment Group and WWF Spain, together with the DSCC have called on Minister Rosa Aguilar Rivero Minister for the Environment and Rural and Marine Affairs (MARM) of Spain, to act on the recommendations of the Instituto Español de Oceanografía (IEO) to close areas of the high seas in the Southwest Atlantic to bottom trawl fishing by Spanish fleets.
Trawler tears off part of underwater observatory
23 May 2011 An unknown fishing trawler veered off track and knocked out a platform of the CAD 100-million (USD 102.6 million) Neptune Canada observatory on the sea floor off British Columbia's (BC) Vancouver Island.
Spanish Institute for Oceanography Releases Results of Research
into Vulnerable Deep-sea Ecosystems in the Southwest Atlantic
4 April 2011 The Spanish Ministry of the Environment and Rural and Marine Affairs (MARM) hosted an event on 4 April in Madrid. Scientists presented the results of the several years of research by the Instituto Español de Oceanografía (IEO) to identify vulnerable marine ecosystems (VMEs) on the high seas of the Atl
New North Pacific Regional Fisheries Management Organization in the Works
4 March 2011 The DSCC welcomes the outcome of the negotiations to establish a new North Pacific regional fisheries management organization
Seamounts: Undersea mountains 'litter' ocean floor
2 March 2011 The seafloor is littered with underwater mountains, a new global survey has revealed.
Scientists warn of damage to deep seabed
8 February 2011 Human activities are affecting large areas of the deep seabed, according to a recent study - and trawling the seabed for fish is the most extensive.
Ministers urged to exert caution over deep sea
1 December 2010 In an open letter sent out to EU Fisheries Ministers, Seas At Risk and the Fisheries Secretariat have called on Ministers to be very cautious when setting catch limits for deep-sea fisheries where stock data is unavailable.
EU Fisheries Ministers deep-six protection of the deep-sea
30 November 2010 The Deep Sea Conservation Coalition is deeply disappointed with the decision made by the European Union's Council of Fisheries Ministers late last night to set Total Allowable Catches (TACs) and quotas for deep-sea fisheries in the Northeast Atlantic in contravention of United Nations General Assembly resolutions.
The Annual Meeting of the North-East Atlantic Fisheries Commission concludes with mixed progress on deep-sea fisheries
14 November 2010 The Annual Meeting of the North-East Atlantic Fisheries Commission (NEAFC) took place 10-14 November 2010. Three non-governmental organizations (NGOs) attended as observers - the Pew Environment Group, Seas at Risk and WWF, together with the DSCC.
Commission Proposal for North Atlantic Fisheries Condemned
6 October 2010 Allowances for deep-sea bottom fishing proposed today by the European Commission will lead to continued depletion and destruction of Northeast Atlantic fish stocks and should be abandoned, according to an international alliance of more than 60 organizations.
Northwest Atlantic Fisheries Organization comes up short on protecting the deep sea
24 September 2010 The meeting of the Northwest Atlantic Fisheries Organization left conservation organizations disappointed with the failure of NAFO countries to live up to their international commitments to protect the high seas.
SCIENTIFIC REVIEW: MOST HIGH SEAS, DEEP SEA FISH UNMANAGED
24 June 2010 The Deep Sea Conservation Coalition today released a report at the United Nations which describes major shortcomings in the implementation of UN General Assembly resolutions designed to protect the deep-ocean from the destructive impact of fishing. Lead author of the report, Dr Alex Rogers of the International Programme on the State of the Ocean (IPSO), said that "RFMOs are failing to manage deep-sea bottom fisheries on the high seas sustainably with respect to target and by-catch species. For most fisheries there is little or no information on the status of stocks and in many cases we do not even know what is being caught where."
UN FISH STOCKS REVIEW CONFERENCE
29 May 2010 The Review Conference on the Agreement for the Implementation of the Provisions of the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea of 10 December 1982 relating to the Conservation and Management of Straddling Fish Stocks and Highly Migratory Fish Stocks, was held in New York from 24-28 May 2010.
Deep-sea species given short shrift in European Commission's fisheries proposal
17 May 2010 The Deep Sea Conservation Coalition expressed dismay at the publication today of the European Commission's Communication on fishing opportunities in EU waters in 2011.
DSCC Statement Made to UN Fish Stocks Review Conference Preparatory Meeting
16 March 2010 DSCC intervention to the Review Conference on the Agreement for the Implementation of the Provisions of the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea of 10 December 1982 relating to the Conservation and Management of Straddling Fish Stocks and Highly Migratory Fish Stocks New York, 24-28 May 2010.
DSCC Members Attend UN Meeting on Biodiversity
5 February 2010 DSCC members attended the third ad hoc informal working group meeting of the United Nations General Assembly on biodiversity beyond national jurisdiction (known as BBNJ), at the United Nations 1st - 5th February 2010. The meeting was convened to study issues relating to the conservation and sustainable use of marine biological diversity beyond areas of national jurisdiction.
DSCC Intervention Statement at the United Nations
2 February 2010 Members of the DSCC attending the ad hoc informal working group on biodiversity beyond national jurisdiction, which opened at the United Nations yesterday (1st February 2010), made the following intervention...
South Pacific RMFO Statement
12 November 2009 At the opening of the 8th Annual Meeting of of the South Pacific RFMO in Auckland (8 -14th November) the DSCC made the following statement.
DSCC Opening Statement - 28th Annual Meeting of NEAFC
9 November 2009 DSCC delivered the following opening statement at the 28th Annual Meeting of NEAFC, 9-13 November 2009
FISHERIES MANAGERS FAIL TO MEET INTERNATIONAL COMMITMENTS
8 November 2009 Responding to the preliminary findings of a new scientific report published today (November 9th), which describes a systematic failure by fisheries managers to protect the deep oceans, the Deep Sea Conservation Coalition (DSCC) has said it is time to halt unregulated deep sea bottom fishing.
South Atlantic Deepwater Corals Protected From Fishing Gear
28 September 2009 Protection for over 23,000 square miles of complex deepwater corals located off the coasts of the Carolinas, Georgia, and eastern Florida was advanced last week by a unanimous vote of the members of the South Atlantic Fishery Management Council, a federal government advisory body.
NAFO, European Union – One Step Forward, One Step Back for Biodiversity Conservation in the Northwest Atlantic
25 September 2009 The Northwest Atlantic Fisheries Organization agreed to prohibit high seas bottom fishing, in 2,500 square miles of ocean but failed to agree to implement environmental impact assessments as required by a 2006 United Nations General Assembly resolution to protect deep-sea biodiversity.
UN GET A MOVE ON – 61/105 OR BUST!
18 September 2009 As the opening round this year of the United Nations (UN) negotiations for the sustainable fisheries resolution took place in New York from Sept. 15-18, the Deep Sea Conservation Coalition (DSCC) organized a side event to remind negotiators about the vulnerability of the deep oceans.
From BBC.com: Fish report hits bottom note
18 September 2009 Richard Black, environment correspondent for the BBC News website, today writes about UN Resolution 61/105 and efforts this week to strengthen the language at the United Nations in New York.
Environmental NGOs urge Fisheries Ministers to expedite "new scenario for ocean life"
16 September 2009 The environmental organizations, Ecologistas en Acción, Greenpeace, Oceana, Seas At Risk and WWF present in Baiona (Spain) at the Ministerial gathering of 47 countries from the five continents emphasize the ministers' recognition that "a new scenario for the seas and the oceans" is urgently needed and that the chronic overcapacity of fishing fleets worldwide must be eliminated.
ENVIRONMENTAL NGOs CRITICIZE LACK OF PUBLIC PARTICIPATION AND TRANSPARENCY OF SPANISH GOVERNMENT IN WORLD FISHERIES MINISTERIAL CONFERENCE
9 September 2009 NGOs committed to the sustainable use and conservation of fisheries resources are concerned with the lack of transparency and communication of the Spanish Minister of the Environment, Rural and Marine Affairs, Elena Espinosa concerning preparations for the 5th World Conference of Fisheries Ministers (1) in Bayona, Spain, next week. The Spanish Government has invited to next week's conference more than 60 Fisheries Ministers from the five continents to adopt a ministerial declaration bound to guide the future policy of sustainable fishing worldwide.
RESPONSE TO: UN Secretary General Review of UN resolution 61/105
21 August 2009 This report shows that fishing States and international organisations must urgently do much more to protect deep-sea ecosystems, or else stop fishing. We will be urging the United Nations to close the loopholes and call for sanctions to halt deep-sea fishing which doesn't comply with the UN resolution all countries agreed to implement in 2006. The destruction of deep-sea biodiversity on the high seas must be brought to an end.
FISHERIES MANAGEMENT FAILING THE HIGH SEAS - UN WARNED
17 June 2009 The DSCC today presented a detailed report on the actions taken by high seas fishing nations to protect deep-sea ecosystems from the destructive impact of bottom fishing on the world's high seas.
DSCC's Submission to the UN Secretary General's Review of Implementation of UN GA 61/105
27 May 2009 A review of the DSCC's submission to the UN Secretary General's Review of Implementation of UN GA 61/105
Voices Raised for Deep Seas
27 May 2009 The DOALOS Review of UN General Assembly Resolution 61/105 is increasing interest in deep-sea issues this year, with an important debate scheduled for the latter part of 2009. In preparation for this, a number of events have taken place to reinvigorate the international community's commitment to stronger protection.
Text of Manado Ocean Declaration
26 May 2009 World Ocean Conference Ministerial/High Level Meeting Manado, Indonesia, 11-14 May 2009
Manado Declaration Commits To Marine Protected Areas
26 May 2009 The World Oceans Conference in Manado, Indonesia, which was attended by high-level representatives from around 90 countries, ended with a strong Declaration about the impacts of climate change on the oceans.
Report of the Eighth round of Informal Consultations of States Parties to the Fish Stocks Agreement
24 March 2009 The meeting of the eighth round of Informal Consultations of States Parties to the Fish Stocks Agreement (FSA) took place from March 16-19 at UN headquarter in New York
Report of the Meeting of the UN FAO Committee On Fisheries 2-6 March: Deep Sea Fisheries on the High Seas
23 March 2009 he meeting of the UN FAO Committee on Fisheries (COFI) took place 2-6 March, 2009 at the headquarters of the UN FAO in Rome. COFI meets every two years to discuss major international fisheries issues as well as the work of the UN FAO related to fisheries. Over 80 countries participated in the meeting; amongst the items on the agenda was the issue of the management of deep-sea fisheries on the high seas.
Deep-sea fish stocks threatened
10 March 2009 Commercial fishing in the north-east Atlantic could be harming deep-sea fish populations a kilometre below the deepest reach of fishing trawlers, according to a 25-year study published on Wednesday.
Progress report on the Implementation of UN General Assembly resolution 61/105
for the protection of vulnerable marine ecosystems from the impact of bottom
fisheries on the high seas
15 January 2009 On behalf of the Deep Sea Conservation Coalition (DSCC), we extend our best wishes to you for 2009. We wish to highlight 2009 as an important year for the conservation and protection of marine biodiversity in areas beyond national jurisdiction.
Fishing Nations flaunt UN demands for
responsible deep sea fisheries in the Northwest Pacific
10 December 2008 Negotiations between the United States, Russia, Korea and Japan failed to establish measures to restore depleted fisheries and protect cold water corals and other vulnerable deep-sea species and ecosystems on the Emperor Seamounts in the Northwest Pacific Ocean at a crucial meeting earlier this month in Tokyo.
GENERAL ASSEMBLY ANNUAL DEBATE ON THE OCEANS
5 December 2008 On December 4, 2008, the UN General Assembly held its annual joint debate on resolutions related to oceans and the law of the sea and sustainable fisheries.
Agreement on deep-sea protection in North East Atlantic: too little too late
17 November 2008 The annual meeting of the North East Atlantic Fisheries Commission (NEAFC) in London 10-14 November failed to take necessary steps to protect deep-sea ecosystems on the high seas and missed the deadline for protection measures set by the UN General Assembly.
DSCC Update - November 2008
13 November 2008 A compilation sent to UNGA delegates of the latest news from recent RFMO meetings and their progress towards implementation of UNGA Resolution 61/105 paragraphs 83-86 on the protection of vulnerable marine ecosystems from high seas bottom fishing.
CCAMLR TOUGHENS UP
11 November 2008 The Convention for the Conservation of Antarctic Marine Living Resources (CCAMLR) held their 27th annual Meeting in Hobart, Australia, between 27th October and 7th November 2008. After extensive discussion, the Meeting adopted a new Conservation Measure - CM22-07 (2008) related to controlling the impacts of permissible demersal fishing (use of longlines, trotlines and pots).
North West Pacific States make progress in protecting high seas
21 October 2008 A meeting of the States involved in the negotiation of a new North West Pacific Regional Fisheries Agreement (17 - 18 October in Tokyo) has concluded with a commitment to meet the 31 December 2008 UN General Assembly deadline for protection of deep-sea ecosystems on the high seas.
South Pacific States Move Closer to a Regional Fisheries Agreement
20 October 2008 A meeting to discuss the establishment of a South Pacific RFMO was held from 6 - 10 October, 2008 in Canberra, Australia
STATES AND NGOs SUPPORT STRONG HIGH SEAS MEASURES
16 October 2008 The IUCN World Conservation Congress (WCC) attended by Governments and NGOs has concluded in Barcelona with strong support for high seas conservation.
European Union Backtracks on Deep-sea Protection
10 October 2008 The annual meeting of the Northwest Atlantic Fisheries Organization (NAFO), which took place in Vigo, Spain September 22-26 2008, failed to take the necessary steps to fully implement the 2006 UNGA resolution on the protection of deep-sea ecosystems on the high seas.
NAFO stalls on protecting the high seas from bottom trawling
26 September 2008 At its 30th Annual Meeting held in Vigo, Spain this past week, the Northwest Atlantic Fisheries Organization (NAFO) addressed several issues important to long-term conservation of the marine environment, but failed to agree to protect areas of the deep-sea, which scientists had identified as vulnerable to the impact of bottom fishing.
NAFO under pressure to meet marine protection obligations
20 September 2008 As the North Atlantic Fisheries Organization (NAFO) prepares to begin its meeting in Vigo next week (21 September) it faces a major challenge to achieve implementation of UN resolution 61/105.
REVIEW FINDS RFMOS FALLING BEHIND
20 September 2008 A new review of implementation by RFMOs of the UN resolution on high seas bottom fisheries management has said there is "still a long way to go". Conducted by the Deep Sea Conservation Coalition, the interim review of UN GA 61/105 examines the progress achieved by RFMOs against their deadline of implementation by December 2008 and finds that most fall a long way short.
North-East Atlantic Fisheries Commission adopts comprehensive agreement to protect the deep-sea
2 July 2008 The Deep Sea Conservation Coalition (DSCC) welcomes the agreement adopted by the North-East Atlantic Fisheries Commission (NEAFC) today to protect deep-sea corals and other sensitive ecosystems from high seas bottom fisheries in the Northeast Atlantic.
DSCC Update - June, 2008
30 June 2008 Since our last update in April, there is much to report with regard to protection of biodiversity in deep-sea ecosystems on the high seas. To name a few highlights: NAFO agreed on measures to implement provisions in the UNGA Sustainable Fisheries Resolution (61/105) on high seas bottom fishing; the 9th Conference of Parties to the Convention on Biological Diversity endorsed scientific criteria that will be important for establishing marine protected areas in the high seas; the FAO has published an updated draft of the international guidelines for managing deep-sea fisheries and the high seas (to be finalized in August); and countries are beginning to implement interim measures in the South Pacific. The DSCC is encouraged by progress in some areas towards meeting the obligations set out in 61/105, though the devil will be in the implementation details.
EU MINISTERS AGREE TO PROTECT VULNERABLE AREAS
25 June 2008 This week (June 23 - 24) EU Fisheries Ministers met to consider a swathe of measures including a regulation to control bottom fishing.
NAFO MAKES PROGRESS ON UN RESOLUTION
7 May 2008 The Northwest Atlantic Fisheries Organization (NAFO) adopted a comprehensive agreement to manage high seas bottom fisheries in the Northwest Atlantic at its meeting which ended May 7th. NAFO members include Canada, the European Union, Norway, Iceland, Canada, Russia and the US.
TIME IS RUNNING OUT FOR NAFO TO PROTECT DEEP-SEA SPECIES
5 May 2008 Conservation organizations from across Canada and Europe have called on the European Union, Canada, Russia, Iceland, Norway, Japan, the United States and the other member nations of the Northwest Atlantic Fisheries Organization (NAFO) to urgently agree to protect deep-sea species in the Northwest Atlantic. A special session of NAFO meets this week in Montreal to decide on regulations to protect cold-water corals and other vulnerable deep-sea species from deep-sea bottom fisheries on the high seas.
STATES ACKNOWLEDGE DESTRUCTIVE IMPACT OF DEEP-SEA FISHING
2 May 2008 The second meeting of the Ad Hoc Open-ended Informal Working Group of the United Nations General Assembly to study issues relating to the conservation and sustainable use of marine biodiversity beyond areas of national jurisdiction (the Working Group) concluded today (2nd May) at the United Nations (UN) headquarters in New York.
DSCC Update - April 2008
1 May 2008 Recently touted as headline news around the world was the fact that the Wilkins Ice Shelf is "hanging by a thread." This news from Antarctica is the latest in an increasingly worrying string of stories about melting polar ice caps and the effects of climate change on global oceans, declining fish stocks, the devastation of bottom trawling, and the total human impact on the world's oceans (see below a collection of media reports on the latest scientific findings). This is the backdrop for the upcoming meeting of the UN Working Group on Biodiversity in Areas Beyond National Jurisdiction, taking place in New York from April 28-May 2. The DSCC is calling on governments to develop concrete recommendations for the comprehensive protection of marine ecosystems, for consideration by the 63rd Session of the UN General Assembly when it meets in the latter part of 2008.
Fifth Meeting to Establish a South Pacific RFMO: What about implementation?
24 March 2008 The Fifth meeting to discuss the establishment of a South Pacific Regional Fisheries Management Organisation (SP RFMO) wrapped up week long negotiations on March 14, 2008 in Guayaquil, Ecuador. While for the first time, participants addressed a number of important aspects that needed airing, it is clear that much more work needs to be done
UN FAO: MEETING ENDS WITHOUT AGREEMENT ON GUIDELINES FOR HIGH SEAS DEEP-SEA FISHERIES
10 February 2008 The UN Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) hosted a "Technical Consultation" at its headquarters in Rome this week to negotiate a set of International Guidelines for the management of deep-sea fisheries on the high seas. The Consultation failed to complete a set of guidelines but instead agreed to hold a follow-up meeting scheduled for August 2008.
Fisheries organizations in the Atlantic and Indian Oceans fail their end of year report
10 December 2007 As the United Nations General Assembly holds its annual Fisheries and Oceans Debate today, a new End of Year Report reveals that the majority of fisheries treaty organisations are failing to take urgent actions called for by the General Assembly in 2006 to protect deep-sea species and ecosystems.
Time is running out for NEAFC to comply with UN General Assembly
28 November 2007 The meeting of the North East Atlantic Fisheries Commission (NEAFC) ended on 16 November without an agreement to implement the UN General Assembly (UN GA) Resolution on bottom fishing. This is the second meeting of the Commission this year at which NEAFC’s contracting parties have failed to do so.
CCAMLR XXVI maintains prohibition on bottom fishing
16 November 2007 This year's CCAMLR meeting (CCAMLR-XXVI), held in Hobart, Australia, from 22 October to 2 November adopted a Conservation Measure on bottom fishing, which maintains the existing stop on new bottom fishing activities and prioritises the necessary research and data collection to allow full development of appropriate management measures for vulnerable marine ecosystems.
"Will we allow the greed of humankind to destroy the very thing which sustains life on our planet?"
4 October 2007 The Oceans in Crisis Briefing for the G77 Forum at the United Nations (UN) on October 3rd was attended by many States including Brazil, Indonesia, India, Kenya, Iran, Malaysia, Philippines, Trinidad and the Seychelles.
Deep sea conservation deep sixed in the Northwest Atlantic
28 September 2007 High seas fishing nations failed to agree to comprehensive protection of cold-water corals and other vulnerable deep-sea ecosystems on the high seas of the Northwest Atlantic Ocean at the annual meeting of the Northwest Atlantic Fisheries Organization (NAFO), which concluded in Lisbon today.
G77 to Discuss Deep Ocean Crisis
26 September 2007 On October 3, 2007 Pakistan, current Chair of the G77 group of Developing countries will facilitate a special briefing to the G77 Forum at United Nations (UN) headquarters in New York. With the start of the annual negotiations at the UN on Oceans and the Law of the Sea, the focus of the briefing will be on the state of the world's oceans and implications for developing countries.
Time to Save the Northwest Atlantic
24 September 2007 As major fishing nations gather to determine the future of the Northwest Atlantic, members of the Deep Sea Conservation Coalition called upon states to implement the United Nations General Assembly (UN GA) mandate for deep ocean protection.
Deep Sea Protection - Stage Set For The North To Follow Suit
14 September 2007 The Southern Pacific ocean was today one step closer to the protection of its deep-sea ecosystems as the Regional Fisheries Management Organisation meeting in New Caledonia ended.
Nations Meet to Discuss Unprotected High Seas of South Pacific
10 September 2007 Representatives from countries throughout the South Pacific plus the European Union (EU), Japan, Russia, China, the US and others start a meeting today in Noumea, New Caledonia, to discuss a new regime for the management of one of the largest unregulated areas of ocean in the world.
UNICP – Crucial for States to Act Now
2 July 2007 This year's UN Open-ended Informal Consultative Process on Oceans and the Law of the Sea (UNICP) examined the issue of Marine Genetic Resources, with members of the DSCC in attendance.
World Press Coverage of Bottom Trawling Agreement
9 May 2007 Check out the list of international press stories filed about the landmark bottom trawling pact in the South Pacific.
Landmark Agreement First of Its Kind to Stop Destruction from High Seas Bottom Trawling
4 May 2007 New international agreement will stop destruction of deep water corals, seamounts and other sensitive habitats in international waters. Up to 25% of the high seas are to be protected from bottom trawling following a landmark decision by nations fishing in the South Pacific.
Nations Meet to Discuss Unprotected High Seas of South Pacific Following UN GA Agreement to Protect Vulnerable
30 April 2007 Representatives from countries throughout the South Pacific plus the European Union (EU), Japan, Russia, China, the US and others will meet next week in Renaca, Chile to discuss a new regime for the management of one of the largest unregulated areas of ocean in the world.
Western Micronesian Chief Executives Announce Moratorium Support
22 March 2007 President Remengesau reported that the Pacific Islands Forum, and other Chief Executives at previous meetings, agreed, within the limitations of their political status, to support a temporary ban on the destructive practice of deep sea bottom trawling.
Report on the outcome of the meeting of the UN FAO Committee on Fisheries and deep-sea fisheries on the high seas
15 March 2007 The meeting (27th Session) of the UN FAO Committee on Fisheries took place 5-9 March 2007 at FAO headquarters in Rome, Italy. COFI meets every two years, bringing together senior government officials from some 100 countries with an interest in fisheries. The agenda of the meeting this year included the issue of deep-sea fisheries on the high seas, in response to the UN General Assembly (UN GA) Resolution 61/105 on bottom fishing on the high seas adopted in December 2006.
Scientists call for Elimination of Government Fuel Subsidies for
Unsustainable High Seas Fisheries
17 February 2007 An international team of leading fisheries economists, biologists, and ecologists has called for the abolition of government fuel subsidies that keep deep-sea fishing vessels moving to deeper waters.
UN General Assembly calls for action on bottom trawling; conservation organisations pledge: we will be watching!
8 December 2006 The UN General Assembly (UNGA) concluded its annual debate on Oceans and Sustainable Fisheries today. At the close of the debate, the UNGA formally adopted two Resolutions, one of which included controversial measures for high seas bottom trawling.
Effective action on bottom trawling scuttled in the final hours of negotiations
23 November 2006 UN fisheries negotiations ran into early this morning as delegates worked to find a compromise. They were looking at text which would have offered immediate protection for vulnerable areas in the absence of agreement on a global moratorium on high seas bottom trawling. Even this compromise was derailed by Iceland.
Out of their minds?
23 November 2006 The ink had hardly dried on the strongest scientific evidence yet in support of a moratorium on high seas bottom trawling, not to mention another report that overfishing is set to seal the fate of fish dinners on Fridays - by 2048 there'll be no fish and little other life left to mention in our oceans.
New research reveals clear scientific reasons for the bottom trawling to stop
15 November 2006 Responding to new scientific findings about the correlation between seamounts, stony corals and high seas fishing grounds, the Deep Sea Conservation Coalition (DSCC) today challenged the few remaining countries opposing a moratorium to step out of the way.
European Community, South Korea and Russia sink international effort to protect South Pacific from high seas bottom trawling
10 November 2006 The Deep Sea Conservation Coalition has condemned northern fishing nations, the European Community, South Korea, and Russia for blocking measures which would have protected deep-sea life in the South Pacific.
European Community, South Korea and Russia sink international effort to protect South Pacific from high seas bottom trawling
10 November 2006 The Deep Sea Conservation Coalition has condemned northern fishing nations, the European Community, South Korea, and Russia for blocking measures which would have protected deep-sea life in the South Pacific.
Canada under fire for opposing a high seas bottom trawling moratorium
31 October 2006 In a global day of action highlighting Canada’s opposition to the high seas bottom trawling moratorium, protests took place on ‘Moratorium Monday’ across Canada and at Canadian embassies in Australia, New Zealand and Chile.
International Pressure on PM to pull NZ Bottom trawl fleet from High Seas
30 October 2006 An international coalition of more than 60 environmental groups has called on New Zealand to pull its bottom trawl fishing fleet out of the international waters of the South Pacific to protect deep-sea life.
Canada - stop blocking progress on a halt to high seas bottom trawling
30 October 2006 Greenpeace Australia Pacific Campaigns Director, Danny Kennedy today delivered a letter to the Canadian Consular-General in Sydney urging him to make representations to the Canadian Prime Minister to reconsider the Canadian position on high seas bottom trawling.
Pacific Block Declares for a Moratorium
26 October 2006 In an important move for the future of the deep seas, the Pacific Islands Forum has declared its support of a moratorium on high seas bottom trawling.
Actress Sigourney Weaver Stands With Conservation Organizations And Ambassadors Calling For A Moratorium On High Seas Bottom-Trawling
3 October 2006 Actress Sigourney Weaver today joined a coalition representing more than 60 conservation organizations from around the world at UN headquarters in New York to call for new action to confront lawless bottom trawling in deep sea fisheries.
US Joins Pro-Moratorium Nations
3 October 2006 On the eve of negotiations commencing at the United Nations in New York, which will determine the future of the high seas, President Bush of the United States has called for a moratorium on high seas unregulated bottom trawling and other environmentally destructive fishing practices.
The EU Commission statement on high seas bottom trawling is greenwash
29 September 2006 The Deep Sea Conservation Coalition (DSCC) today accused the European Commission of greenwashing a set of proposals designed to undermine the growing support for a high seas moratorium on bottom trawl fishing, and noted that it did not seem to reflect the will of all EU Member States.
Australian support for protection of deep sea life from high seas bottom trawling
22 September 2006 The Deep Sea Conservation Coalition has welcomed today's announcement by the Australian Government that it will support interim measures at this year's United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) to stop unregulated destructive fishing practices such as bottom trawling on the high seas.
Australian support for protection of deep sea life from high seas bottom trawling
22 September 2006 The Deep Sea Conservation Coalition (DSCC) has welcomed today's announcement by the Australian Government that it will support interim measures at this year's United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) to stop unregulated destructive fishing practices such as bottom trawling on the high seas.
Protect the Kakadu's of the deep
20 September 2006 Ninety per cent of the world’s oceans are unexplored and only a tiny 0.0001% of the biology of the deep seafloor has been investigated, but the limited studies to date of these cold, deep, dark places find many wonderful surprises.
Seamounts: rest stops and filling stations for tuna and swordfish
11 September 2006 Seamounts (underwater mountains) serve as oceanic filling stations or rest stops for commercially important fish species such as tuna and swordfish, scientists have concluded.
Honk for the high seas!
28 August 2006 As Canadian Minister of Fisheries and Oceans, Loyola Hearn considers Canada’s position on a moratorium on high seas bottom trawling, Canadian scientists and celebrities join the campaign for a moratorium on Canada’s streets and wharfs, with signs like "Honk for the High Seas” and "High Seas Dragging is a Drag".
Greenpeace activists lock down high-seas bottom trawler in Port Nelson
31 July 2006 In the early hours of the morning today Greenpeace activists boarded a deep sea bottom trawler - the Belize flagged Chang Xing - in Port Nelson. The activists have locked themselves to the ship preventing it from leaving port.
Pacific Leaders Back Bottom Trawling Ban
31 July 2006 The Federated States of Micronesia (FSM) have announced that they are officially signing on to Palau's proposal for a moratorium on high seas bottom trawling which will be presented to the United Nations General Assembly later this year.
DSCC response to UN report of high seas protection:
Sparse, ineffective, woefully inadequate - now will you take action?
15 July 2006 The United Nations Secretary General's Review of measures by states to protect vulnerable deep-sea life from destructive fishing practices such as high seas bottom trawling has confirmed these areas receive woefully inadequate protection.
DSCC Response to the UN Report on High Seas Protection: Measures Sparse, Ineffective, Woefully Inadequate
14 July 2006 The long awaited UN Report of measures to protect the vulnerable deep oceans of the high seas has confirmed that these areas receive about as much protection as the dodo did in seventeenth century Mauritius.
Trawl ban a drop in the ocean
6 July 2006 The Deep Sea Conservation Coalition said the decision by Australian fishing company Austral to be part of an industry proposal to close parts of the Southern Indian Ocean from bottom trawl fishing shows they are aware of the need to protect deep-sea life from the destruction caused by bottom trawling, but warned this alone will not solve the problem.
The southern Indian Ocean needs real protection, not voluntary half measures
5 July 2006 The proposal by New Zealand high seas fishing company Sealord, together with three other fishing companies, to voluntarily refrain from deep-sea fishing in limited areas of the international waters of the Indian Ocean, falls woefully short of the action needed to protect deep-sea corals, seamounts and other unique marine ecosystems in the region.
Australian government fails to protect deep sea ecosystems
20 June 2006 The Deep Sea Conservation Coalition expressed disappointment that the Australian government failed to support a Senate motion calling for short-term measures to protect the deep seas from the destructive fishing practice of bottom trawling.
Time to deal definitively with the problem of high seas bottom trawling
19 June 2006 At the 7th UN Informal Consultative Process on Oceans and Law of the Sea, many countries reinforced the need to deal effectively with the threat to marine ecosystems from bottom trawl fishing on the high seas.
While Campbell tries to save the whales, Abetz fails to protect deep sea ecosystems
19 June 2006 The Deep Sea Conservation Coalition today expressed disappointment that the Liberal-National Coalition Government did not support a Senate motion calling for short-term measures to protect the deep seas from the destructive fishing practice of bottom trawling until longer term arrangements for oceans governance are put in place.
More evidence, support and a new proposal
15 June 2006 At the United Nations meeting taking place this week in New York to discuss ecosystem approaches and oceans, Palau has presented a new proposal for a moratorium on high seas bottom trawling. In the approach to the meeting, Austria, Belgium, Denmark, Sweden and Brazil confirmed their support for a UN moratorium, as science continues to unravel the mysteries and vulnerabilty of deep-sea species and habitats.
Oceans World Cup - netting the Destroyers
8 June 2006 On World Oceans Day, Deep Sea Conservation Coalition (DSCC) members highlighted the need for a time-out on high seas bottom trawling at a variety of events in countries around the world, including New Zealand, Poland and Chile.
Australia fails to reach finals on deep sea protection
8 June 2006 On World Oceans Day, Greenpeace gave Australia a red card for its inaction to stop deep sea destruction, in particular the highly destructive fishing practice of high seas bottom trawling.
Deep sea gets billboard support
1 June 2006 A billboard placed at Canberra Airport today aims to get public and politician's support for Australia to take a strong position in the United Nations in 2006 to protect deep sea life by agreeing to a global moratorium on the destructive fishing practice of bottom trawling on the high seas.
Time to take Canada to task
31 May 2006 At a DSCC event in Toronto hosted by the David Suzuki Foundation, key speakers Dr. David Suzuki and Dr. Ransom Meyers from Dalhousie University, referred to Canada's position against a United Nations moratorium on high seas bottom trawling as regressive.
Agenda setting in Portugal
31 May 2006 Will the Government of Portugal, one of the European countries that holds the key to resolving the high seas trawling controversy at the United Nations, make a move to secure a strong majority in favour of a high seas bottom trawl moratorium within the European Union?
Canada's Fisheries Minister agrees bottom trawling damages habitat and fish stocks
31 May 2006 Ottawa - In a meeting with Dr. Sylvia Earle, Canadian Fisheries Minister Loyola Hearn agreed with the renowned ocean explorer's views on deep sea bottom trawling. "It does damage to the stocks and it does damage to the habitat," Hearn said.
DSCC calls for transparent Portuguese deep sea policy
30 May 2006 The Deep Sea Conservation Coalition (DSCC) today welcomed Portugal's three largest environmental organisations to its membership, at a Workshop organised under the auspices of the Luso-American Foundation for Development.
A deep look into our oceans
23 May 2006 "High seas bottom trawling is just not acceptable. Governments need to feel the pressure. They’re wiping out 8,000 year old coral reefs for the sake of a few fish destined for the rich country markets. It’s just not acceptable." Listen to the DSCC podcast (Quicktime)
RFMOs not a panacea
19 May 2006 A new publication by the Worldwide Fund for Nature and TRAFFIC confirms the position of the Deep Sea Conservation Coalition that regional fisheries management organisations are not a panacea to stop the devastation of vulnerable deep-sea marine ecosystems by bottom trawlers operating on the high seas.
Deep-water sharks, polar bears and hippopotamus face extinction
4 May 2006 Deep-water sharks join the ranks of species facing extinction, together with polar bears and the hippopotamus, listed on the World Conservation Union's 2006 Red List of Threatened Species.
Can the clocks be stopped?
27 April 2006 The Swedish environment minister, Lena Sommestad, has announced that Sweden will push for a European Union position in support of a United Nations moratorium on high seas bottom trawling. After two years of governments promising to take "urgent action" to protect deep sea life, will other countries finally follow suit?
Public calls for action on high seas bottom trawling destruction
18 April 2006 The Deep Sea Conservation Coalition today posted postcards from the public to the Australian Minister for Environment and Heritage, Senator Ian Campbell.
High time other countries found Palau's political backbone
13 April 2006 "If all nations that purport to support urgent action to protect the biodiversity of the international waters of the world's oceans from bottom trawl fishing, were as consistent and persistent as the Republic of Palau, the deep sea habitats of the high seas would undoubtedly already be safe from high seas bottom trawling," said Deep Sea Conservation Coalition political advisor, Matthew Gianni.
CBD passes the buck for action on high seas bottom trawling
4 April 2006 Although extinctions are proceeding at an unprecedented rate, the Convention on Biological Diversity failed to do more than reiterate the call for immediate action to protect vulnerable deep-sea corals and underwater mountains from high seas bottom trawling, shifting the responsibility to the United Nations.
Process not substance dominates preparatory meeting for FSA review
28 March 2006 Last week, from March 20-24, governments met in New York for the preparatory meeting for the Fish Stocks Agreement (FSA) Review Conference to be held from May 22-26. Although Japan, Indonesia and the Philippines indicated their intention to join the FSA, and some improvements were made to the criteria to assess the FSA, process and procedure largely dominated the discussions.
Deep sea life can be saved - if the international community acts now
20 March 2006 Pioneering deep-sea scientist and National Geographic explorer-in-residence, Sylvia Dr. Earle explained why she believes deep-sea life must be protected from one of the world’s most destructive fishing practices - deep sea bottom trawling. Listen to the interview
Protect the high seas from an act of insanity
16 March 2006 The Deep Sea Conservation Coalition has congratulated Achim Steiner on his imminent appointment as Executive Director of UNEP. In his current post as Director General of the World Conservation Union (IUCN), Mr. Steiner has called deep sea bottom trawling an act of insanity and said "We must protect the high seas before it’s too late".
Pirate trawler tracking not enough
6 March 2006 As the High Seas Task Force proposed a global database to track down illegal fishing vessels as one of nine initiatives to close the net on modern day pirate fishers, Greenpeace revealed that European governments are turning a blind eye to unregulated fishing vessels flying European flags. If governments are serious about tackling IUU fishing, they must address high seas bottom trawling now.
Legal obligation to track bottom trawling now
27 February 2006 Deep Sea Conservation Coalition, Australia Pacific Coordinator, Lyn Goldsworthy told the participants at the international Sharing the Fish Conference today, that all states have a legal responsibility and obligation to protect and preserve the marine environment of the deep seas.
Bottom trawling continues unrestricted as international fisheries meeting ends
17 February 2006 The international fisheries meeting in Wellington today ended disappointingly with states failing to take any action to protect life in the deep sea from the destruction caused by high seas bottom trawling.
New European Union Position Justifies High Seas Bottom Trawling Moratorium
16 February 2006 In what appears to be a significant improvement over its past position, the European Union (EU) has called this week for strong, precautionary measures to protect biodiversity in the high seas.
Protection for High Seas Biodiversity - Time to Get Serious
13 February 2006 Two key meetings are taking place this week which will set the course for the protection of biodiversity on the high seas.
Overwhelming Support for High Seas Bottom Trawling Moratorium
12 January 2006 A national poll released today jointly by Greenpeace and the Ecology Action Centre shows 78.3% of Canadians believe that Canada should reverse its current position on high seas bottom trawling and support a moratorium on the fishing practice in international waters - even if it may cost jobs.
Study Shows Shocking Decline In Deep-Sea Bottom Trawled Species
6 January 2006 A new study published in Nature has revealed serious declines in deep water species targeted for commercial fishing in the Northwest Atlantic.
"Fishy Sandwich: hold the mustard...gas!"
30 November 2005 Campaigners for an immediate UN moratorium on high seas bottom trawl fishing read with growing alarm the article "Decades of dumping chemical arms leave a risky legacy" by John Bull.
UN General Assembly fails to heed calls to protect the world's ocean commons
29 November 2005 The United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) today reaffirmed its call for nations to take 'urgent action' to protect deep-sea corals, seamounts and hydrothermal vent ecosytems from destruction by bottom trawl fishing but stopped well short of agreeing to declare a halt to the practice in international waters.
France to support high seas moratorium in unregulated areas
28 November 2005 On the eve of the UN General Assembly debate on Oceans, the French government announced that "In order to limit the impact on habitats in the high sea, France will support a moratorium on all fishing techniques for deep-sea species, where there is no competent authority in this regard (70% of the oceans), pending the creation of a Regional Fisheries Management Organisation (RFMO)".
NEAFC fails to protect vulnerable deepwater fish and corals from bottom trawling
25 November 2005 The North East Atlantic Fisheries Commission (NEAFC) has failed to further reduce fishing effort on vulnerable deep-sea fish stocks and to protect cold-water coral reefs from deep sea bottom trawling, against the recent advice of scientists.
UNGA negotiations: NGOs prevail in retaining right to participate in the future of the high seas
14 November 2005 Despite attempts by several powerful governments to have NGOs banned from disucssions on the future of the high seas, NGOs will be allowed to participate in crucial meetings next year.
Deepwater sharks in extreme decline: ICES recommends zero catch
10 November 2005 The slow and steady life strategy of sharks may have served them well for millions of years, but now these fearsome fish are under serious threat from a combination of destructive fishing practices.
Scientists call on Australia to support the moratorium
4 November 2005 58 Australian marine scientists have sent a letter to the Australian Prime Minister, John Howard urging him to "take advantage of an historic opportunity to secure significant protection for the world’s deep-ocean ecosystems on the high seas" by promoting the negotiation of a moratorium on high seas bottom trawling at this year’s United Nations General Assembly.
Will Canada hold good on its promise to protect the oceans?
25 October 2005 In spite of the fact that Canadian Prime Minister Paul Martin has called on countries to "stop the rape of our oceans" and Fisheries Minister Geoff Reagan agrees that no habitat means no fish, Canada stands poised to vote against a moratorium on bottom trawling in international waters at the United Nations.
Scientists Speak Out: Action Urgently Needed in the Deep Seas
20 October 2005 There is growing concern amongst scientists about the need to take urgent action to protect deep sea biodiversity - fish stocks as well as habitat. The International Council on the Exploration of the Sea (ICES) has prepared a report calling for "a complete overhaul of deep-sea fisheries."
The Lophelia reefs of the Minch
14 October 2005 In May 2005, scientists from the Scottish Association for Marine Science (SAMS) set off onboard a Greenpeace ship to explore ancient corals off the coast of Scotland. Find out more about the history of deep sea exploration in the Minch and how scientists explore deep sea corals today, together with the expedition’s research findings in this article by SAMS scientists, Dr. Davies and Dr. Roberts.
DSCC engages Iceland in debate on temporary halt to high seas bottom trawling
11 October 2005 A science tour event organized by the Deep Sea Conservation Coalition together with Iceland Nature Conservation Association, and attended by key people from Iceland's government, has initiated a debate in Iceland over the country's opposition to an interim suspension on high seas bottom trawling.
Confusion surrounding Spanish position
5 October 2005 On 12 August, the Spanish Ministry of Agriculture and Fisheries published a press release "Spain, First Major Fishing Power to Support regulation on Bottom Trawling", (in Spanish, "España primera potencia pesquera que respalda la regulación del arrastre de fondo").
DSCC calls on France to support a moratorium
30 September 2005 In Paris this week, the Deep Sea Conservation Coalition (DSCC) called on France to support a UN General Assembly resolution as France’s friends of the ocean gathered at the Oceanographic Institute for the 'Deep Trouble' conference ('Au fond, il y a un problème') to discuss high seas bottom trawling.
NAFO fiddles while Rome burns
27 September 2005 Fisheries managers gathered in Estonia for the Northwest Atlantic Fisheries Organisation's annual meeting last week, once again failed to take the 'urgent action' against destructive fishing practices called for by the United Nations, apparently deciding instead to develop guidelines on gathering data and review existing research.
Why we shouldn’t eat the dinosaurs of the deep
27 September 2005 She holds the depth record for solo diving to 1000 metres. She has lived underwater for two weeks as head of a team of women aquanauts. She has spent a total of over 6,000 hours under water. Today, renowned US oceanographer and environmentalist, Dr. Sylvia Earle is one of over a thousand scientists calling for urgent action to protect the fragile habitats and life of the deep oceans.
NAFO's failure points to urgent need for moratorium on high seas bottom trawling
19 September 2005 The jewel in the crown of Regional Fisheries Management Organizations (RFMOs) is failing, the Deep Sea Conservation Coalition (DSCC) said at today's opening of the NAFO annual general assembly in Estonia.
If NAFO's the best example, the deep seas are in deep trouble
19 September 2005 The once rich groundfish resources of the Grand Bank have been decimated. The organisation responsible - the Northwest Atlantic Fisheries Organisation is fatally flawed, has lost all credibility and must be scrapped, says a report commissioned by the Canadian government.
Oceans unveil how little is known
24 August 2005 The latest discovery of underwater life in abundance – coral forests at 1000 metres deep - was released today in Vienna at a conference of marine biologists, underlining recent calls to take a time-out on trawl fishing of the ocean bottom until scientists can accurately assess the real richness of deep sea life and its resources.
DSCC to New Zealand bottom trawl fishing industry – get your facts straight
30 June 2005 In a recent press release, New Zealand's Seafood Industry Council seeks to draw attention from the growing support for a moratorium on high seas bottom trawling by downplaying and distorting the wealth of existing scientific evidence that demonstrates the destructive nature of high seas bottom trawling.
Industry Claims Exposed as False
14 June 2005 The day after the United Nations Informal Consultative Process on the Law of the Seas (UNICPOLOS) ends, in a region of international waters described as a marine Jurassic park, Greenpeace captured a New Zealand bottom trawling fishing vessel on video - dragging up and throwing overboard giant, ancient, deep water corals (paragorgia), endangered black coral and a rare species of crab.
Initial impressions of UNICPOLOS outcome
11 June 2005 Initial impressions of the outcome this year’s meeting of the United Nations Informal Consultative Process on Oceans and the Law of the Sea (UNICPOLOS) from the Deep Sea Conservation Coalition team in New York.
Maritime Union backs action on bottom trawling
9 June 2005 As Greenpeace activists onboard the Rainbow Warrior take action against bottom trawling fishing vessels in the Tasman Sea, the Maritime Union of New Zealand says it supports the direct action. Maritime Union General Secretary Trevor Hanson says it has become obvious that overfishing and bad practices such as bottom trawling are wrecking the environment, and would also destroy the industry that depends on the environment.
Six good reasons for a time-out on high seas bottom trawling
8 June 2005 The Deep Sea Conservation Coalition has released a white paper highlighting the six main arguments that have motivated 1,136 scientists from 69 nations to publicly call for an immediate time-out on the most destructive fishing method in the least protected place on Earth – deep sea bottom trawling on the high seas.
Put humanity before technology
8 June 2005 "Einstein once said "Our technology has surpassed our humanity". He was talking of nuclear weapons. The high seas bottom trawl fleets that ply the high seas, constrained only by how much they can catch in these largely unregulated waters, come very close to being a weapon of mass destruction for deep-sea life." Read the full text of Greenpeace oceans policy advisor, Karen Sack's impassioned panel presentation to UNICPOLOS on World Oceans Day.
Such a hard case to make?
7 June 2005 It isn't, on the face of it, a hard case to make. In fact, it would seem obvious: dragging bottom trawls, complete with giant steel doors and rollers, across the sea bed is bound to be immensely damaging to the deep sea habitat and the species that live there.
High time for high seas: timeout on bottom trawling key to sustainable oceans
6 June 2005 As the United Nations Informal Consultative Process on Oceans and the Law of the Sea (UNICPOLOS) meeting begins today, the international community faces a crisis of illegal, unregulated and unreported (IUU) fishing.
One year on – Greenpeace sets sail to highlight bottom trawling’s destructive impacts
31 May 2005 Greenpeace's ship, the Rainbow Warrior has left Auckland for international waters around New Zealand to highlight the destructive impacts of bottom trawling. The tour follows up on an expedition last year in which Greenpeace documented New Zealand and Belize bottom trawlers operating in the Tasman Sea.
Get your act together & protect fragile footholds for ocean life
12 May 2005 Following on from a European tour in which leading marine biologists brought their concerns direct to European decision-makers, a number of European countries are being asked to support a moratorium on bottom trawling on the high seas in the run-up to the EU’s Law of the Sea Working Group (COMAR) meeting on Friday 13 May.
Slow-growing deep-water sponges at risk from bottom trawling
9 May 2005 Around the world, large deep-water sponge fields are hotspots of biodiversity. Their three-dimensional structure provides highly varied habitats for a wide range of species. But deep-water sponges are being swept up as by-catch, crushed or scarred by bottom trawlers or clogged by the clouds of sediment churned up by their heavy fishing gear.
From words to jellyfish soup and seafloor rubble
3 May 2005 Called ‘Moving from Words to Actions’, it was hailed as the meeting where fisheries ministers would take action to conserve the high seas. But the Ministerial declaration released yesterday from the Canadian High Seas Governance Conference in St. John’s Newfoundland completely ignores the issue of environmental destruction caused by bottom trawling, fails to protect habitats or make commitments to specific actions, and does not set deadlines.
A call for action at the high seas governance conference
2 May 2005 Fishermen, conservation groups, scientists and community economic development representatives attended a two day international conference, held April 29th and 30th in St. John’s, Newfoundland. Participants concluded there are clear negative impacts of bottom trawl fishing gear on the sea floor.
Potential cancer cures from the deep sea threatened by high seas bottom trawling
2 May 2005 A report released by Marine Conservation Biology Institute (MCBI) and Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC), suggests that deep sea life holds major promise for the treatment of human illnesses. But scientists are increasingly concerned that bottom trawling may be destroying medically beneficial species before they are even discovered.
Spain's proposal on bottom trawling a stalling tactic?
29 April 2005 At Seafood 2005 in Brussels this week, the Spanish Fisheries Ministry unveiled its new position in response to the growing outrage around the world about the devastating impacts of bottom trawl fishing on the high seas. But is the proposal merely a stalling tactic?
Response to Spanish Position On High Seas Bottom Trawling Moratorium
29 April 2005 "The Spanish are now on record as accepting that bottom trawling is extremely detrimental to the fragile habitats of the deep oceans," said Deep Sea Conservation Coordinator, Kelly Rigg. "It is therefore curious that their proposal would not require a single Spanish high seas bottom trawler to immediately stop fishing."
Pioneering undersea explorer Sylvia Earle meets with Spanish government officials and addresses Spanish scientists
20 April 2005 On 18 and 19 April, Dr. Sylvia Earle met with Spanish scientists and government officials to advocate that Spain, a major fishing nation, has an opportunity to act constructively for the conservation of deep sea marine biodiversity by supporting a UN General Assembly moratorium on high seas bottom trawling.
International scientists visit European Parliament with call for action to stop the destruction of deep ocean habitats in international waters
19 April 2005 Leading deep sea scientists today spoke out against the European Community's failure to fulfil its commitments to protect the seabed from high seas bottom trawling.
First countries embrace UN Task Force recommendations including the elimination of high seas bottom trawling
15 April 2005 The Dominican Republic and Papua New Guinea are the first countries to adopt and begin implementation of a series of recommendations made by the United Nations (UN) Task Force on Environmental Sustainability, including the elimination of high seas bottom trawling.
Fisheries Ministers fail to take action
12 March 2005 Fisheries Ministers from around the world meeting in Rome today, have failed to agree action to protect deep-sea biodiversity from the destructive impact of bottom trawl fishing on the high seas.
Christmas tree coral discovery
10 March 2005 by Dr. Lance E. Morgan, Marine Conservation Biology Institute New deep sea discoveries are being made all the time. Several new species of black corals have been discovered this year alone, including a new shrub-like black coral that shines like a pink and white Christmas tree. Yet their delicate structures can be removed with one pass of a bottom dragging net and may take decades to recover.
Protecting the deep seas
28 February 2005 "For too long, the world acted as if the oceans were somehow a realm apart - as areas owned by noone, free for all, with little need for care or management... What we need is high-level political commitment for marine conservation and protected areas. I assure you that the United Nations system shares your strong devotion to this effort." Kofi Annan.
Coral gardens in the dark depths
23 February 2005 Find out why deep-sea corals can be compared to ancient forests, where they live, the creatures they shelter, what they eat, what they look like, and how scientists are studying them in order to understand and predict how they will respond to and recover from disturbances such as deep sea bottom trawling.
Ocean dead or alive? High time for time out on high seas bottom trawling
23 February 2005 The Deep Sea Conservation Coalition (DSCC) urged environment ministers at the Global Ministerial Environment Forum to act - both at home within their governments and collectively at the international level - and support a UN moratorium on bottom trawling on the high seas this year.
US move signals hope for saving marine habitats
21 February 2005 Seeking to protect deep-sea coral beds and other sensitive fish habitat, a US federal fishing council banned bottom trawling this month over more than 370,000 square miles off Alaska's Aleutian Islands, the largest such action taken anywhere in the world.
Iceland and allies block progressive marine protection measures at CBD SBSTTA 10
11 February 2005 Germany, Sweden, New Zealand and Brazil expressed dismay that action on marine issues appeared to take a step backwards at CBD SBSTTA 10. Deep Sea Conservation Coalition member Greenpeace, attending the meeting, sought to strengthen a number of draft goals and targets designed to help governments reduce and halt the loss of marine and coastal biodiversity by 2010.
High time for The High Seas - the wild, Wild West of the Oceans
11 February 2005 When a nuclear powered submarine owned by a leading world power crashes into a huge undersea mountain that didn't appear on any maps, you have to wonder how much we really know about the deep, dark depths of our planet's oceans. Incredibly, there are more maps of the moon than there are of the deep seabed.
International Conference on Biodiversity, Science and Governance Ends with Strong Call for Deep Sea Protection
28 January 2005 The International Conference on Biodiversity, Science and Governance in Paris will close today with a strong call on the international community to meet its goal of halting the decline in global biodiversity by 2010. Critical among the areas of the planet high in biodiversity and under threat are the often-neglected deep oceans.
Coalition calls on SIDS and international community to address environmental vulnerabilities of Pacific Island countries and halt the destruction of high seas biodiversity by deep sea bottom trawlers
2 January 2005 The Pacific Islands and island people are living on vulnerable environmental frontlines. "As indigenous people, we depend on biodiversity for our traditional ways of life, and are entitled to an equitable share of benefits," said Maureen Penjueli, speaking for indigenous peoples at the SIDS Panel on Environmental Vulnerability.
Latest reports warn urgent action needed to face oceans crisis
7 December 2004 In a report focusing on the impacts of fishing in the north-east Atlantic, the prestigious UK Royal Commission on Environmental Pollution (RCEP) concludes that drastic and urgent action is needed to save the marine environment from further destruction by fishing, including the ruinous effects of deep sea bottom trawlers.
Call for UN action on high seas destruction gains momentum
25 November 2004 The IUCN World Conservation Congress has adopted a resolution calling for United Nations (UN) action to protect the world's oceans from high seas bottom trawl fishing.
Baton of high seas protection passes to WCC as UN fails to take action
21 November 2004 A global coalition of conservation organizations today called on members of the International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN) attending the World Conservation Congress (WCC) to agree to a resolution that will help protect deep sea biodiversity on the high seas. The coalition was joined in this call by Carlos Manuel Rodriguez, Minister of Environment and Energy for Costa Rica.
UN General Assembly - High Seas Bottom Trawling To Continue Unchecked But The Tide Is Turning
16 November 2004 Ten years ago the UN Convention on the Law of the Sea came into force, bringing management and coordination to the world's oceans, but the treaty largely failed to anticipate the development of deep water fishing on the high seas.
Bottom trawl fishing must be abandoned
15 November 2004 In an interview with coalition member Ecoceanos, Ambassador Jorge Berguno, from Chile's Ministry of Foreign Affairs, one of the country's most respected diplomats and probably one of the most knowledgeable persons on the Law of the Sea in Chile today, said that "bottom trawl fishing must be abandoned".
Greenpeace halts deep sea destruction
12 November 2004 Further to the discovery and documentation of two Spanish-flagged vessels bottom trawling in the Atlantic last month, Greenpeace took action against a third vessel, the Lithuanian-flagged Anuva owned and operated out of Spain. The actions took place as the North East Atlantic Fisheries Council met in London, just days ahead of the United Nations General Assembly debate on the future of the high seas in New York on 16 November.
Danson, star of the TV series "Cheers" warns of the threat posed by bottom trawlers
4 November 2004 "It's 200 feet wide... and weighs over a ton... it destroys everything in its path in an instant... It destroys the shelter and food that fish need. Once their habitat has gone, the fish will also disappear. We must stop this destruction." In his lesser known role as member of the Board of Directors of coalition member Oceana, Ted Danson, a renowned environmental activist, speaks out against bottom trawling.
Sink or swim for the worlds’ last great ecological frontier
4 November 2004 “Peering through the thick glass windows of their submersible, the ocean scientists were greeted by a sight no one on Earth had ever seen before... As the crew of the research vessel Alvin stared in wonder, it probably didn't occur to them that this newly discovered biodiversity at the bottom of the ocean might one day need to be protected from people.
Getting active in support of a moratorium
27 October 2004 Oceana launched a cyberalert asking Spain to support a moratorium on high seas bottom trawling and Greenpeace delivered the first batch of a projected 100,000 postcards calling on UN Secretary General Kofi Annan to work with States to establish a UN moratorium on high seas bottom trawling.
How much more evidence does the United Nations need?
26 October 2004 A bright orange spider crab spanning almost two metres and black-skinned, luminous-eyed sharks are just some of the rare deep sea creatures dumped from the nets of an EU bottom trawling vessel.
"Orphan Ocean" In Need Of Protection By World Family
25 October 2004 Jean-Michel Cousteau and his Ocean Futures Society (OFS) call on United Nations members to support a global moratorium on bottom trawling of the high seas.
Deep Sea Conservation Coalition launch in Argentina
25 October 2004 Coalition member, CeDePesca, hosted a workshop in Buenos Aires for NGOs, scientists, the fishing industry and government representatives to discuss the need for a high seas moratorium on bottom trawl fishing.
Request to APEC for a moratorium on bottom trawling fishing activities
19 October 2004 The Deep Sea Conservation Coalition met with fisheries and aquaculture experts at APEC's Integrated Oceans Management Forum III, on Easter Island.
EU fleet exposed destroying deep sea life as UN meets to discuss protection
18 October 2004 The needless destruction of the high seas was exposed by Greenpeace this morning, after documenting a EU bottom trawler operating in the North Atlantic.
EU protects deep sea corals around the Azores, Madeira and the Canary Islands from bottom trawling
11 October 2004 The European General Affairs Council has just adopted a proposal from the European Commission for urgent measures to protect deep sea coral reefs around the Azores, Madeira and Canary Islands.
Ocean conservation the next global warming issue - policymakers must act quickly to avert looming oceans crisis
9 October 2004 An article appearing in the Washington Post warns that the oceans are in crisis and points to a number of ominous signs, the sharp decline in fish stocks over the past few decades being one of the clearest.
Costa Rica submits language for a moratorium on bottom trawling on the high seas
7 October 2004 The Deep Sea Conservation Coalition is actively encouraging all Member States to support Costa Rica's additions submitted to the chairs of the negotiations on both the UNGA Fisheries Resolution and the Oceans Resolution.
Around the world, the Deep Sea Conservation Coalition calls for UN action to stop the deep sea destruction
5 October 2004 Deep sea bottom trawling has been compared to clearcutting ancient forests or using a bulldozer to catch rabbits. Campaigning to save the high seas from the most destructive form of fishing, the Deep Sea Conservation Coalition held press conferences in London, New York and Chile.
Rapacious Fishing Threatens Ancient Seabed Habitats - Call For UN To Take Action
5 October 2004 A Coalition of leading environmental and conservation organisations today warned that the international community is failing to protect seabed habitats of the high seas, as oceans negotiations begin at the United Nations (UN) this week.
Micronesia and Palau call for moratorium on deep sea bottom trawling
29 September 2004 Addressing national leaders gathered at the United Nations General Assembly Sebastian Anefal, the Federated States of Micronesia's Foreign Minister reiterated the call made on 23 September by Palau’s Vice President, Sandra Pierantozzi for a moratorium on deep sea bottom trawling.
Why is the New Zealand Government Wimping Out to the Fishing Industry?
24 September 2004 Greenpeace criticizes the decision of the New Zealand government to take a weak "case by case" approach to deal with the greatest threat to life in the deep sea: bottom trawling.
United Nations General Assembly must play the lead role in resolving the threat to deep-sea biodiversity posed by bottom trawling on the high seas
20 September 2004 In a letter to EU Fisheries Minister Franz Fischler and the External Affairs, Environment and Fisheries Ministers of all EU Member States, the Deep Sea Conservation Coalition expressed deep concern "if the European Union were to advocate that the UN FAO and/or Regional Fisheries Management Organizations (RFMOs) take the lead in resolving this issue.
Mikhail Gorbachev presents a letter on behalf of the Deep Sea Conservation Coalition to Spain's agriculture and fisheries minister
13 September 2004 Mikhail Gorbachev presents a letter on behalf of the Deep Sea Conservation Coalition to Elena Espinosa, Spain's Minister for Agriculture and Fisheries, calling on Spain to support a moratorium on high seas bottom trawling.
UNICPOLOS calls on countries to speed up action on high seas bottom trawling
In spite of the failure of the European Union to take a leadership role to protect vulnerable deep-sea ecosystems, the United Nations Informal Consultative Process on the Law of the Seas (UNICPOLOS) called on countries to accelerate action to protect deep-sea ecosystems and deal with the impact of bottom trawl fishing on the high seas.
Fishing nations still flouting UN deep sea protection
Many countries are failing to live up to their commitments to the United Nations (UN) to protect vulnerable deep sea species and ecosystems, according to two reports released today ahead of a two day debate on deep sea fisheries by the UN in New York.
NEAFC Protects Deep Sea Sharks but Falls
Short for Other Species and Habitat
The 30th annual meeting of the North East Atlantic Fisheries Commission ended today, with countries agreeing to prohibit fishing for deep-sea sharks but failing to agree on significant, additional measures to safeguard vulnerable deep-sea species and ecosystems.