The extensive use of Bottom Trawling and dredges for commercial fishing causes more direct and avoidable damage to the ocean floor — including deep-sea coral and sponge communities and other unique and sensitive seafloor marine life — than any other human activity in the world. Bottom trawls and dredges are so destructive because they effectively clear-cut everything … Read more
The deep sea is the last great frontier on Earth. For hundreds of years people have pondered, debated and explored the vast depths of the oceans, yet our knowledge of them barely skims the surface. Remarkably, though it is the largest ecosystem on Earth, we have better maps of Mars than we do of our … Read more
News of Jamaican trawlers entering Belize’s southern waters in December to fish led to a decisive agreement by the Ministry of Fisheries to halt the issuing of fishing licenses to foreign fishing fleets in Belize’s Exclusive Economic Zone pending consultation with local fishermen. The action will allow officials to assess the sustainability of the proposed … Read more
Capping a five-year effort, Oceana helped persuade the South Atlantic Fishery Management Council to protect 59,000km2 of valuable deep-sea corals stretching from North Carolina to Florida by banning all bottom trawl activity in the area. Known as America’s largest continuous deep sea coral ecosystem, the area includes hundreds of pinnacles up to 500 feet tall … Read more
Beginning November 2009, bottom trawls and dredges will be prohibited in four deepwater canyons along the US Atlantic coast – a move that will protect the Atlantic tilefish fishery but that will also preserve a rich ecosystem that supports lobster, deep sea corals and sponges living in the canyons. Oceana pushed the Mid-Atlantic Fishery Management … Read more
The National Marine Fisheries Service announced that it will adopt Oceana’s “freeze-the-footprint” approach by closing nearly 46,5 million hectares of the Bering Sea to destructive bottom trawling to protect important seafloor habitats and marine life. The area protected is larger than the state of California.
After two years of intensive lobbying by Oceana in Brussels and Madrid, the European Union prohibited destructive fishing practices, including bottom trawling, which destroys important marine habitat, in over 160 million acres around the Azores, Madeira and the Canary Islands. The area protected covers an area larger than France.
In a historic conservation move, the North Pacific Fisheries Management Council adopted the Oceana approach and closed nearly 95,5 million hectares of ocean, including recently discovered deep sea coral gardens, to bottom trawling, industrial fishing’s version of clear cutting. The area protected is roughly twice the size of the state of California.
After campaigning by Oceana, the Mid-Atlantic Fishery Management Council voted to protect deep-sea coral communities in New England and Mid-Atlantic submarine canyons from destructive monkfish bottom trawling gear.