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Protecting Vulnerable marine ecosystems (VMEs) in the high seas from bottom fishing impacts

September 6, 2017 @ 11:30 - 13:00


September 6, 2017
11:30 - 13:00
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Documents of the meeting

Concept note & programme

Jessica Sanders, Food and Agriculture Organization of the UN (FAO), presented on the legal and policy framework for VMEs, including the history of UN General Assembly resolutions and FAO deep-sea fisheries guidelines. Tony Thompson, FAO, reviewed VME criteria, and measures adopted by Regional Fisheries Management Organizations (RFMOs). He noted improvements in: data collection; enforcement; review of VME closures; footprint delineation; VME coverage; and, the contribution of VMEs to SDGs and the Aichi Biodiveristy Targets. Mauricio Gálvez, Institute of Fisheries Development, described a mapping project to locate potential VMEs. He reviewed “move-on” rules for VME encounters, noting uncertainty costs, and suggested workshops on MSP regimes. Michel Kaiser, IUCN Fisheries Expert Group (IUCN-FEG), shared research results related to: species’ depletion values and fishery penetration depth; fish longevity in more stable habitats; and, analytical tools to predict the proportion of long-lived species expected to remain in an area. Joseph Appiott, CBD, highlighted links between RFMOs and the work of the CBD, including similarities between EBSAs and VME criteria.