Creating Sustainable Fisheries in the Emerging World: Working hard to save us from ourselves

  • 3/5/2013 | 7:30 PM – 9:00 PM
  • Location: Moulton Union, Main Lounge
  • Event Type: Lecture

Creating Sustainable Fisheries in the Emerging World: Working hard to save us from ourselvesJerry Knecht, '76, is founder and president of North Atlantic Seafood, in Portland, Maine. Mr. Knecht will give a presentation about a joint venture company Bali Seafood International, and a long-term collaborative initiative to design and implement a large scale sustainable fisheries project in Indonesia. The Lesser Sundra Sustainable Fisheries Initiative is being developed with the cooperation of several large Non-Governmental Organizations (NGO's) as well as the Fisheries Ministry of Indonesia. The goal is to take 6 fisheries from the Lesser Sundra area of Indonesia from stock assessment, through stock rebuilding as necessary, and on to certification.

The extreme remoteness and lack of modern infrastructure on Indonesia's islands, have, so far largely protected the Lesser Sundra's aquatic and terrestrial resources from major development. The area has been fished mostly by individual fishermen hand-lining in small boats. However, in the decade industrial vessels and collector boats have come to the area to buy whole round fish as a cheap source of protein and fishmeal. Small boat fishermen, eager for a course of hard currency, sell any fish they can catch to these boats. As the buyers are indiscriminate, all the fish that can be caught can be sold including juveniles, breeding stock, and fish caught using gillnets, fish traps, and other unsustainable fishing methods.

The Bali Seafood International collaborative initiative offers a more environmentally sustainable source of income to the region's fishermen and their respective communities than tourism development, or pirate fishing. Key to the success of the initiative is using economic levers to achieve sustainability goals. By providing a higher price for sustainably caught seafood, the project provides direct economic incentive to local fishermen for fish caught in a sustainable manner.