Sustainable Fisheries

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Worldwide, small-scale coastal fisheries contribute significantly to providing food, employment, and incomes to many very poor people. But these same fisheries, and the ecosystems upon which they rely, are under increasing threat from a combination of climate change, pollution, over-fishing, and the exploitation of resources.


Fisheries management has been a major component in trying to address some of these issues, but with limited global success. The potential of fisheries, if managed well, is considerable but what form that potential will take will depend on how and why fisheries are managed.


This collection of reports and presentations explores just this question, describing some of the challenges faced by small-scale fisheries worldwide and their efforts to address these challenges and improve the health and well-being of the people who are dependent on these threatened environments.


The collection brings together the "grey literature" of the field, valuable work that is not readily available through academic journals and databases but is instead spread across dozens of organizational websites. This set of reports was initially identified as part of a synthesis review of key lessons commissioned by the Rockefeller Foundation's Program on Oceans and Fisheries. We are pleased to make it more easily available for others to use and build on and encourage researchers and practitioners to add relevant work to the collection.

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Tanzanian Coastal and Marine Resources: Some Examples Illustrating Questions of Sustainable Use

December 1, 2001

This is Chapter 4 of the book Lessons Learned: Case Studies in Sustainable Use. The coast of Tanzania is characterised by a wide diversity of biotopes and species, typical of the tropical Indowest Pacific oceans, and the peoples living there utilise a variety of its natural resources. Because of the extent of the diversity and variety, several different examples are used by this study to elucidate the complexity of issues and multiplicity of management responses related to use of coastal and marine resources. It emerges that coastal management requires an integrated cross-sectoral approach to address the wide array of inter related issues involved.The study describes the status of selected resources from the principal biotopes (coral reefs, mangroves, seagrass beds and beaches) as well as fish stocks, and it examines various forms of their utilisation. Some special cases of endangered species are also examined. The study attempts to analyse questions of sustainable use in relation to ecosystem dynamics, socio-economic processes, institutions and policies. The characteristics for what we consider as approaching a state of sustainable use are proposed, and the requirements considered necessary for ensuring sustainability are outlined. Past experience and the current status of coastal and marine resource uses are summarised through the examples chosen in order to explain the main constraints to the attainment of sustainability. Cross cutting issues related to the breakdown of traditional management systems for common property resources in the face of increasing commercialisation, privatisation, and external interventions appear to pose general problems. The general experiences of community projects, legislation, and mitigation measures are assessed from the examples we have chosen.

Lessons Learned: Case Studies in Sustainable Use, Conclusion

December 1, 2001

The conclusion of Lessons Learned: Case Studies in Sustainable Use summarizes the overarching lessons learned from the case studies provided in the volume. 1. Sustainability of uses of renewable natural resources is dependent on the existence of a 'sustainable society'at the local, national and global levels. 2. Successful biological conservation is a function of equity and democracy. 3. To achieve greater sustainability of uses of natural resources will likely require modification of the roles of organizations and government agencies in authority. 4. The current conservation paradigm of Protected Areas (including as applied to the 'biodiversity hotspots'concept) may not be economically viable in many developing countries, simply because the opportunitycosts often exceed the value local people receive from their existence. National and international agencies and organizations realize most of the value from designation of protected areas and 'hotspots'. 5. It is not possible to transpose directly the combination of factors that influence one case to another site, and expect the same impact or result.6. Donor agencies and/or central government policies need to consider management requirements beyond project cycles in order to promote long-term sustainability of resource uses.7. External factors such as war and natural disasters can have an over-riding influence on the sustainability of resource use. 8. Interventions on key resources by external institutions often pressure transformation of local governance systems. The impact of these changes is often overlooked. More specific observations of common features. Furthermore, the conclusion provides lessons related to policy, social processes, institutions, and information.

Lessons Learned: Case Studies in Sustainable Use, Preface Page

December 1, 2001

This preface page of the volume Lessons Learned: Case Studies in Sustainable Use, provides a summary of the book's purpose and structure. Enhancing sustainability requires a multidisciplinary approach. Because there is such diversity in resources, uses, and users, there is no universal formula, yet to promote, or assess, practices in context is essential. Without this capacity approaches to sustainable use will remain superficial and ineffective.The present volume presents six detailed cases of uses of different facets of biological diversity in Africa (East, West and Southern), Central Asia and South America-Latin America;. The objective of the project was to identify 'Lessons Learned' from examples of sustainable use. To address this objective, six cases were selected because they had been implemented for several years and they were being implemented in different regions, thus enhancing the potential for identifying key lessons. Each of the case studies was examined using an 'Analytic Framework for Assessing the Factors that Influence Sustainability of Uses of Wild Living Natural Resources' The Analytic Framework (Annex 1) provided a consistent, systematic approach to the analysis of the cases according to 'domains of issues' considered important in assessing sustainability, including inter alia, ecological processes and functions, economic factors, societal and institutional factors.