WisconsinAquaculture.com - June 2014: Pres Obama/Sec Kerry Call for More Domestic  Aqua
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June 2014: Pres Obama/Sec Kerry Call for More Domestic Aqua

President Obama & Secretary Kerry Call for More Domestic Aquaculture and Marine Protection at "Our Ocean" Conference

by Meredith Brooks, CTSA

Full story

In June, the U.S. State Department facilitated the "Our Ocean" international conference on sustainable fisheries, marine pollution, and ocean acidification. According to a White House Fact Sheet on the announcement, "Americans all over the country depend on the ocean for food, jobs, and recreation, but the health of our ocean is under threat on multiple fronts, from overfishing to carbon pollution." 

The declaration for increased sustainable management efforts comes after the recent release of the National Climate Assessment, which confirms that rising sea levels and ocean temperatures will significantly impact our relationship with one of our greatest resources. In a video message to conference participants, President Obama announced the following eight new executive actions to preserve and protect the oceans:

  • New protections for world-class marine areas.
  • Combating black market fishing and supporting fishermen.
  • Establishing a pathway to new marine sanctuaries.
  • Meeting diverse coastal needs with regional marine planning.
  • Understanding the impacts of ocean acidification.
  • $102 million to build resilience in coastal communities.
  • Bolstering domestic shellfish aquaculture.
  • National Strategic Plan for Federal Aquaculture Research.

An increase in domestic aquaculture production can help to ….complement traditional capture fisheries. The last two of the President's executive actions address this, as they are intended to improve opportunities for aquaculture in the U.S. As stated in the Fact Sheet, "Aquaculture is an increasingly integral source of safe, nutritious, sustainable seafood for consumers in the United States and worldwide." 

The final action is the National Strategic Plan for Federal Aquaculture Research, recently released by the Interagency Working Group on Aquaculture (chaired by Gary Jensen) with the goal to "provide a framework for coordination and collaboration across agencies on research related to this important agricultural domain and to guide Federal agencies going forward as they prioritize their aquaculture-related research and development activities." The following is the proposed vision statement for the future of aquaculture in the United States: A globally competitive, technologically appropriate, and diverse aquaculture sector in the United States that meets increasing demand for seafood and products that are affordable and meet high standards for safety, quality, and environmental stewardship, with maximum opportunity for profitability and economic growth.

For more information and resources from the "Our Ocean" conference, please click on the following links:

Short Call to Action video from Secretary of State John Kerry

White House Fact Sheet: Leading at Home and Internationally to Protect Our Ocean and Coasts

National Strategic Plan for Federal Aquaculture Research

 

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WisconsinAquaculture.com - June 2014: Pres Obama/Sec Kerry Call for More Domestic  Aqua
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