Fishing: Global perspectives.
Fishing is central to the livelihood and food security of 200 million people. It is one of the few examples of a main food source that relies on wild animal stocks.
Global demand for fish has doubled in 30 years due to population growth in poorer countries and a matching increase in demand for fish there. One in five people depend
on fish as their primary source of protein.
According to UN agencies, aquaculture (farming and stocking of aquatic organisms) is growing more rapidly than all other animal food sectors. Despite this, statistics reveal that global main marine stocks are at extreme risk due to overfishing and environmental degradation.
(source: UN Overfishing: a threat to marine biodiversity)
According Nitin Desai, Secretary General of the 2002 World Summit on Sustainable Development, which took place in Johannesburg:
Overfishing cannot continue. The depletion of fisheries poses a major threat to the food supply of millions of people.
The Johannesburg Plan of Implementation calls for the establishment of Marine Protected Areas (MPAs), which many experts believe may hold the key to conserving and boosting fish stocks. Yet, according to the UN Environment Programme’s (UNEP) World Conservation Monitoring Centre, in Cambridge, UK, less than one per cent of the world’s oceans and seas are currently in MPAs.