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How Can Canadian Fisheries Increase Tuna Productivity
If we use a medical term to describe the feeling of making money, ‘positive feedback’ would be the most suitable one because the term refers to a stimulation resulting in a positive impact, thus motivating the individual to continue the behavior. Normally, production is equal to profits in business, and the fishing industry is no exception. However, nowadays, even though fishermen are catching a lot of fish, fish stocks are being depleted and the rate of profits is slowing down. Specifically, in Canada, by 2007, although bluefin tuna fisheries along Canada’s west coast are still profitable, their profits have been at the lowest point in the last 25 years (Neilson et al, 2007). Although conventional knowledge states that catching more fish is equal to earning more profit, it seems that the knowledge is not applicable to the situation. Thus, the issue is: how can catching more fish be bad for business? Although the Canadian fisheries are still profitable right now, their productivity is decreasing. The solution for this problem can be that the Canadian fisheries can make more profits under a sustainable development in the long-term. Thus, if they want to earn long term profits, they should engage in fishing under sustainable development by setting closed fishing seasons, and making rules on the minimum length of fish.
In the first section, I will talk about the closed fishing seasons theory, which is the first sustainable way that Canadian fisheries can follow, and discuss two cases from Namibia and Japan that Canadian fisheries can learn from. Then, I will analyze some different opinions about this policy, and finally I will summarize the scholars’ views on this theory.
The first sustainable way that Canadian fisheries can follow is setting closed fishing seasons. By setting closed fishing seasons, tuna can be protected in their spawning season. Also, fishing industries can leave tuna a period to grow to its legal length to be fished (Cochrane, 1999, p. 918). In this part, it will be shown that Canadian fisheries can learn from the experiences of other countries such as Namibia and Japan.
Firstly, in terms of Namibia, the author of “FISH: General” (2012) illustrates the reason why fishing industries should set a closed fishing season, by demonstrating that fish stocks can return to a high level after a period of moratorium on fishery (p. 19744B). To support his opinion, he applies data to emphasize the serious problem they previously have faced: the fishing industry which is composed of 5 percent of the national GDP was focused to stop because nearly 70% of fish in Namibia was overexposed. However, after applying strategies to restore the stocks to maximize the benefits of the fishing industries and to develop a more environmentally-friendly management, they now have a sound system composed of “monitoring, control and surveillance systems”, and the fish stocks are now increasing to the appropriate level for fishing(p. 19744B).
Secondly, Canadian fisheries can also learn from the experience of Japan. From the end of 1960s, Japanese fisheries had begun to apply sustainable management strictly to tuna industry with other 13 countries (Havice, & Campling, 2010). As the shortage of tuna had brought a series of problems to Japan such as “increasing optional costs, high debt, low international fish prices, and crew shortages”, in order to solve the problems above, they restructured the way they fish by reducing half of its pole and line fleet, and one fifth of its longline fleet. They also replaced their “fishing capacity with a more efficient (but capital intensive) purse seine fleet” (p. 100). Moreover, Japanese fisheries also signed a document of strategy that “[i]f Pacific island countries were unwilling to sign deals with any one of the gear types, all would refuse” (p.…