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Vulnerable marine ecosystems

Processes and practices in the high seas












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    Book (series)
    Report of the FAO Workshop on the Implementation of the International Guidelines for the Management of Deep-sea Fisheries in the High Seas – Challenges and Ways Forward, Busan, Republic of Korea, 10-12 May 2010. 2011
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    A Workshop to analyse the challenges and propose ways forward for the implementation of the International Guidelines for the Management of Deep-sea Fisheries in the High Seas (adopted in 2008) (FAO Deep-sea Guidelines) was held in Busan, Republic of Korea, from 10 to 12 May 2010. The meeting was attended by participants from a wide range of disciplines, experience and geographic areas. The report is divided in two parts. Part 1 provides the meeting summary and the main conclusions and recommenda tions with respect to general considerations, governance, support to developing countries, management issues, compliance and enforcement, vulnerable marine ecosystems (VMEs) and review and implementation processes. Part 2 contains the background documents on: (i) issues with respect to fisheries management in areas where there are regional fisheries management organizations/arrangements (RFMO/As); (ii) VMEs in areas where there are RFMO/As; and (iii) both topics in areas where there are no RFMO/ As. It was concluded that the current Workshop provided a good opportunity to establish an overall view of implementation and discuss challenges faced. However, given that many states and RFMO/As have only just begun to address many of the provisions in the FAO Deep-sea Guidelines and the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) Resolutions for the purpose of their implementation it was suggested that additional meetings to evaluate the challenges and potential solutions in the implementation sh ould be planned for the future. Additional evaluations of the implementation of the FAO Guidelines could also encourage relevant parties and stakeholders to continue their efforts on implementation. Specific programmes of work and activities that will be needed to advance implementation of the FAO Deep-sea Guidelines were also developed.
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    Report of the FAO workshop on encounter protocols and impact assessments, Arendal, Norway, 5-8 May 2015 2016
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    This document contains the report of the FAO workshop on encounter protocols and impact assessments, held in Arendal, Norway, from 5 to 8 May 2015. The workshop was organized as part of the FAO Deep-sea Fisheries Programme, which supports the implementation of the International Guidelines for the Management of Deep-sea Fisheries in the High Seas (adopted in 2008). The overall workshop objective was to share experiences and lessons learned in the development and implementation of encounter protocols to protect vulnerable marine ecosystems from impacts from bottom fishing activities in the areas beyond national jurisdiction, and the development and use of impact assessments to gain information on potential impacts of deep-sea bottom fisheries on deep-sea ecosystems. The need to develop encounter protocols and impact assessments have been referred to in various international fora, and global and regional instruments contain guidance on how to develop these tools. As such, regional f ishery management organizations or arrangements (RFMO/As) have developed and adopted conservation and management measures to address these potential impacts of bottom fisheries. The workshop concluded by identifying areas of challenges for the implementation and use of encounter protocols and impact assessments, and developed a suite of key messages for both concepts that will be used to inform further regional and global discussions on the use of the these tools.
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    Marine species biological data collection manual 2016
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    The purpose of this manual is to provide fishery observers, and in general fishery data collectors, with a detailed description of the procedures required to collect biological data from the most important fishery groups that can be encountered while at sea. It is intended as a complement to the standard observer manuals issued by States and/or Regional Fisheries Management Organizations and Arrangements (RFMO/As) and takes into account the additional requirements regarding vulnerable marine eco systems (VMEs) included in the FAO International Guidelines for the Management of Deep-sea Fisheries in the High Seas. The Guidelines provide states and RFMO/As with management guidance ranging from an appropriate regulatory framework to the components of a good data collection programme, and towards a sustainable use of marine living resources exploited by deep-sea fisheries as well as the protection of the affected habitats. States and RFMO/As are asked to develop and implement data collect ion programmes that include the deployment of on–board fishery observers. These are often faced with the difficult task of having to identify not only target species, but also non–target species, including vulnerable ones such as cold water corals, sponges and cartilaginous fishes. The identification of the latter species can be problematic due to a scarce knowledge regarding their occurrence and distribution for many regions and a lack of identification guides specifically designed for use by n on–experts at sea. This tool enables non-specialists to collect samples and take proper photographs, which can be then examined by taxonomic experts on shore and potentially improve the taxonomic resolution of the species in the catch. This manual was prepared under the “FAO Deep–sea Fisheries Programme” with the support of the Governments of Japan and Norway through the projects “Fisheries management and marine conservation within a changing ecosystem context” and “Support to the implementatio n of the International Guidelines on the Management of Deep-Sea Fisheries in the High Seas”.

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