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Blog Category: Dr. Kathryn Sullivan

NOAA Identifies Six Nations Engaging in Illegal, Unreported, and Unregulated Fishing

Worldwide economic losses from IUU fishing from ships such as this are estimated to be between $10 billion and $23 billion annually. (Credit: U.S. Coast Guard)

Kathryn Sullivan, Ph.D., under secretary of commerce for oceans and atmosphere, and NOAA’s administrator at the SeaWeb Seafood Summit in New Orleans released a new NOAA report that identified six nations -- Colombia, Ecuador, Mexico, Nigeria, Nicaragua, and Portugal -- as engaging in illegal, unreported and unregulated fishing (IUU).  IUU fishing and seafood fraud undermine international efforts to sustainably manage and rebuild fisheries, and creates unfair market competition for fishermen playing by the rules, like those in the United States. The findings are part of the 2015 biennial report to Congress. 

The SeaWeb Seafood Summit brings together global representatives from the seafood industry with leaders from the conservation community, academia, government, and the media for in-depth discussions, presentations, and networking around the issue of sustainable seafood. The goal of the Summit is to foster dialogue and partnerships that lead to a seafood marketplace that is environmentally, socially, and economically sustainable. 

Protecting the country’s reputation as a leader in sustainable fishing is at the heart of President Obama’s efforts to combat illegal, unreported, and unregulated fishing and seafood fraud around the world.  The report also highlights U.S. findings and analyses of foreign IUU fishing activities and of bycatch of protected species and shark catch on the high seas where nations do not have a regulatory program comparable to the United States.  

In addition to undermining international fisheries efforts, IUU fishing can also devastate fish populations and their productive marine habitats, threatening global food security and economic stability. Global losses attributable to IUU fishing have been estimated to be between $10 billion and $23 billion annually, undermining the ability to sustainably manage fisheries as well as economic opportunities for U.S. fishermen.   

The report is a requirement of the High Seas Driftnet Fishing Moratorium Protection Act, as amended by the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Reauthorization Act and the Shark Conservation Act. 

NOAA’s mission is to understand and predict changes in the Earth’s environment, from the depths of the ocean to the surface of the sun, and to conserve and manage our coastal and marine resources. Join us on TwitterFacebookInstagram, and our other social media channels.

NOAA Acting Administrator Addresses Climate Change and Prevalence of Extreme Weather Events

NOAA Acting Administrator Addresses Clean Energy Summit

Yesterday, Dr. Kathryn Sullivan, acting administrator of NOAA, participated in the 6th annual Clean Energy Summit in Las Vegas, NV. Dr. Sullivan was part of a panel to discuss extreme weather and climate change.

NOAA, part of the U.S. Commerce Department, strives to not only understand the science behind climate change, but how decision makers can apply that science to inform operations, preparedness, and future planning. Business and industry get it. They understand that the planet is changing, and they rely on NOAA's climate research, products and services to make sound business decisions, both for their economic outlook and their resilience to extreme events.

During the panel, Dr. Sullivan talked about the unique role the federal government plays in developing and maintaining the expansive observational systems that provide insights into our changing planet. NOAA's science is showing a link between climate change and the prevalence of extreme weather events.  For example, 2012 had the most broken records for temperature for a one year period. New and continued research helps scientists the probability of extreme events change in response to global warming.

NOAA satellites and ground stations provide a wealth of weather data generating an entire economic sector that today includes the Weather Channel, commercial agricultural advisory services, and new insurance options.  In addition, Commerce Department economic data help small businesses make important key business decisions such as where to locate, where to manufacture a product and where to sell that product.  This use of Commerce data is an example of the power of open data and private sector entrepreneurship that benefits all Americans and creates new jobs.

NOAA's ability to provide "whole earth" understanding informs decisions for all industries and communities. Understanding and applying data promotes resilience in our communities and our economy.