Posted on 22 March 2021
Media statement on PMCSA The Future of Commercial Fishing in Aotearoa New Zealand
Julie Hall, Challenge Director:
“The Prime Minister’s Chief Science Advisor’s recommendations are in line with the Government’s desire for holistic, ecosystem-based fisheries management to support a healthier ocean that provides for future sustainable use. Holistic management is needed to ensure that fishing and other marine activities that are central to the livelihoods and identity of New Zealanders remain a way of life for future generations. A healthy ecosystem is the foundation from which we can maintain and grow a long-term ‘blue’ economy.
"Our research is increasing understanding of complex issues facing our marine ecosystems, such as cumulative effects. We are using this knowledge to develop tools – with stakeholders and Māori partners – to improve the way we deal with these issues. Better marine management is critical if we are to care for the moana, which is essential for New Zealanders’ future health and wealth. This knowledge and tools are freely available to help marine managers and communities to live, work and play sustainably.
“The tools include everything from the most sophisticated ecosystem models to practical decision-making tools, such as Bayes decision networks. This offers marine managers access to expert knowledge to predict how different management decisions can impact cumulative stressors.”
Chris Cornelisen, EBM in Action lead/Cawthorn/Report panel member:
“The recommendations from the Prime Minister’s Chief Science Advisor are in line with the Government’s desire for holistic, ecosystem-based management to support a healthier ocean that provides for future sustainable use. Holistic management is needed to ensure that fishing and marine activities that are central to the livelihoods and identity of New Zealanders remain a way of life for future generations. Sustainable Seas evidence shows to achieve a healthier marine ecosystem, effective management of cumulative effects (the way stressors interact and amplify or mitigate each other) is critical.
“The report shows we have all the necessary ingredients to take better care of our coasts and oceans. A lot of data already exists and there is much we can do within the existing regulatory framework. But the panel found that we must do better in the way we work together.
“A key focus of the report is for Government, Māori, industry, researchers and communities to come together to develop a ‘bold oceans strategic action plan’. Unless you have a healthy ecosystem, you don’t have a strong blue economy in the long term. It’s vital to use appropriate knowledge and tools to solve the challenges all marine managers face to maintain and grow Aotearoa’s blue economy. Having that overall strategy is critical to bring current fisheries management practices into alignment.
“That’s why the report advocates for a connected worldview and sharing information and evidence. We need this knowledge and tools to better manage the many competing uses of, and values we hold for, the marine environment.”
Notes to editors
Sustainable Seas Challenge defines a blue economy as being made up of marine activities that create economic value and contribute positively to social, cultural and ecological well-being.
Sustainable Seas Challenge defines cumulative effects as resulting from incremental, accumulating and/or interacting stressors from human activities and natural events that overlap in space and/or time. Cumulative effects:
- Can be ecological, social, economic or cultural
- Arise from single or multiple stressors
- Can be direct and/or indirect
- Include those associated with past and present activities and exacerbation associated with climate change
About the Sustainable Seas National Science Challenge
The vision of Sustainable Seas is for Aotearoa New Zealand to have healthy marine ecosystems that provide value for all New Zealanders. It brings together scientists, social scientists, economists, and experts in mātauranga Māori and policy. It is funded by MBIE and hosted by NIWA. Twitter | Facebook | Instagram | YouTube