Written by Volker Koch, Blue Solutions Initiative
The newest publication in our series “Solutions in Focus” has just been released! It gives an overview of the solutions related to “Sustainable Fisheries and Aquaculture” on our PANORAMA-Solutions for a healthy planet online platform. Fisheries and Aquaculture provide food and work all over the world, especially in developing countries. Over 80 Million tons are harvested annually from the sea by capture fisheries, and marine aquaculture produces another 26 Million tons. Fish and shellfish are highly important for food security. At the same time, the intense exploitation has led to widespread overfishing, today 90% of fish stocks are exploited at maximum sustainable levels or are already being overfished. Aquaculture – especially of shrimp and salmon – has led to habitat destruction and ecosystem degradation. It has been difficult to find a balance between food production, economic gains, and long-term sustainability of the ecosystems that provide these services to humankind. On the other hand, there have been many positive examples to ensure long-term sustainability in fisheries and aquaculture and counteract the impacts of past abuse of marine and coastal ecosystems. Here we have compiled a number of inspiring best practice examples – blue solutions – that have had positive impacts on ecosystems, fish populations and on the economy of fishers and fishing communities. We believe that these successful working examples can be replicated in other contexts and help to make fisheries and aquaculture more sustainable in the long term.