Ecological Sustainability and Social Equity
- Productivity and ecological characteristics of the resource must be maintained.
- Equitable representation of local users and stakeholders is essential.
- Fisheries approached on the basis of ecosystem boundaries and biodiversity conservation in order to maintain optimal conditions for healthy, self replenishing fisheries.
- Incorporating the wellbeing of all aspects of the fishery ecosystem (bottom and water habitat quality + bottom dwellers, plankton and pelagic forage species + predator fish, sea mammals, seabirds, and fishermen).
- Fishing that occurs at a natural scale and is centered around local communities: the fishing boats, the fishing gear, the market.
- Precautionary judgment of how many of which fish are needed to keep the ecosystem healthy and, from assessments of living populations, how many are available to fisheries in a given year.
More specifically, there are several social and ecological considerations that must be incorporated in community and ecosystem based management.
- Make decisions at the most local level possible that includes all relevant and affected parties that are part of the local community.
- Give each participant an equitable opportunity and responsibility to participate in discussions and deliberations.
- Make certain all participants have access to adequate information and understanding of ecological principles that affect their future and enable them to contribute responsibly to the decision-making process.
- Deliberate and make decisions using current and objective knowledge and information derived from scientific methods and practical experience.
- Have an equitable obligation to provide knowledge and information that is relevant and essential to the realization of our goals and that is collected in a way that has minimal impact on confidentiality and competitive position.
- During deliberations, maintain the highest standards of credibility and ethical conduct, fair and accurate reporting, and full disclosure and accountability for our affairs.
- Protect those community uses of the marine ecosystem and its resources that are consistent with the established goals and principles from being substantially sacrificed to, or eliminated by, any other uses or outside interests.
- Protect reproduction. Fisheries must be managed in a way that recognizes critical points in the life-history strategies and spawning patterns of species.
- Protect juveniles. Fisheries must be managed in a way that will allow adequate numbers of juveniles to reach reproductive age as determined by sound information on the reproductive behavior of the species in question and results of precautionary models that predict the numerical requirements for sustainable and genetically diverse populations of the species.
- Maintain food-chain relationships. Fisheries must be managed in a way that recognizes and protects food-chain linkages.
- Restore and maintain critical habitat. All fishing and non-fishing activities must be managed so as to maintain the integrity of habitats critical for spawning, juveniles and, feeding, and habitats that could/should/once did support populations of now depleted fish.
- Protect localized fish populations. Fisheries must be managed in a way that protects local populations of fishery species and the habitats that support them wherever there is a probability that they exist. These distinct populations often vary genetically so their conservation conserves diversity with survival value within the species. Protecting distinct habitats will protect the diversity of associated species as well.