How Can We Ensure Sustainable Fisheries and Responsible Aquaculture?

A few weeks back, we discussed fisheries management, its uniqueness, and sustainable practices to imbibe while fishing. This next part will show you how as an individual, you can ensure that our fishes are kept alive to aid the ecosystem.

Please, read on…

Responsible aquaculture operations that minimize pollution, disease, and damage to native ecosystems should be employed. Aquaculture fills in the gap of seafood supply. Not only is aquaculture crucial, but it is also a sustainable substitute for consumers when compared to other farmed proteins. Seafood, a high resource, has the highest protein retention and the lowest feed conversion ratio compared to chicken, pork, and beef.

Aquaculture has lesser greenhouse gas emissions than other types of farming. With an anticipated 10 billion people to inhabit the planet by 2050, the demand for animal protein will rise by 52 percent. Sustainable and healthy approaches to feeding the world are essential now than ever before. Almost all fishing can be sustainable if well-managed, regardless of the fishing method. There is no such thing as a sustainable species of fish, only sustainable populations of fish. What is sustainably fished in one part of the ocean could be overfished in another.

Sustainable fishing allows humans to continually fish in oceans and other bodies of water indefinitely for nutritious seafood. When fishing is more sustainable, our oceans are healthier. Also, by promoting sustainable fishing, fishers will be less keen to continue industrial fishing practices such as dredging, trawling, and blast fishing, which cause damage to aquatic habitats. These practices sometimes destroy the local ecosystem of where they fish entirely.

8 Ways to Support Sustainable Fisheries and Responsible Aquaculture

1. Diversify your choice and switch your fish.

2. Educate yourself by reading articles, watching videos, and asking questions from organizations like REES Africa.

3. Support local communities and sustainable fisheries where possible.

4. Buy fresh to avoid needless packaging, thereby reducing plastic pollution.

5. Choose eco-certified restaurants.

6. Fish is still meat, so choose it less often and, when done, enjoy lots of sustainable species that have not been overfished or harvested using harmful techniques.

7. Choose your fish carefully, making sure the fish bought is safe to eat. Ensure the label is being checked and go for only certified products.

8. Support non-profit conservation organizations such as the Institute for Fisheries Resource, the Aquaculture Stewardship Council, and the International Seafood Sustainability Foundation to help promote sustainable fishing and marine life conservation. These organizations are devoted to the protection and restoration of fisheries and other resources and ascertaining coalitions among citizens, agencies, and the fisheries industries.

The sustainability of global fisheries is a great concern. The United Nations identified three pillars of sustainability: economic development, social development, and environmental protection. When there is poor ecological health of a fishery, it reduces the economic profits for fishers, and the economic profitability of individual fishers wrecks the social intent of fishing communities. Thus, the management of these fisheries is very crucial. Farming fish responsibly and sustainably is the solution to providing future generations with access to healthy and environmentally friendly protein options.


Author: Gift Ifokwe

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