The North Pacific Fisheries Management Council has banned commercial fishing from newly opened Arctic waters created by the receding ice until the impacts of fishing are better understood. The summer ice cover has fallen by more than 40% from the 1980s, opening around 1.3 million square kilometers of the Arctic to fishing, oil exploration and shipping. The pre-emptive move is supported by Arctic fishermen, apparently, and intended to send a signal.
“We urge other Arctic countries to follow the lead of the US,” said Bill Fox, Vice President of Fisheries with WWF-US. “Many of the fish stocks and other elements of the marine ecosystem cross more than one country’s jurisdiction and while the US move is helpful, it is not sufficient unless other Arctic nations take similar steps.
Hat tip Surfrider.