Britain to Support Ban on Blue Fin Tuna

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First Monaco, and then France supported the ban on blue fin tuna and now the Brit's are joining the campaign to save the endangered fish. The British Fisheries Minister has announced that Britain is joining France and Monaco in calling for the fish to be listed on the Convention for International Trade in Endangered Species (CITES).

However, it's not smooth sailing yet: 175 countries have signed the convention and have to vote on the ban next March. A two thirds majority is required. Image from the firstpostAccording to Save the Bluefin, a site set up by an ardent fisherman and environmentalist, there are a number of factors contributing to the species’ dramatic decline: huge overcapacity of fishing fleets, catches that far exceed legal quotas, pirate fishing, the use of illegal spotting planes to chase tuna, under-reporting of catch, fishing during the closed season, management measures that disregard scientific advice– all driven by the insatiable demand of luxury food markets.

For example, the refusal of Nobu restaurant in London to take it off their menu, despite the protestations of a number of high profile celeb's and diners. By comparison, Pret a Manger sandwich shops have pulled all tuna sandwiches from their stores.

The recently released documentary, The End of the Line, outlined the perils of over-fishing for our oceans. Charles Clover of the film, said there was evidence that bluefin tuna of breeding age had already been fished out. "France is one of the nations principally responsible for wiping it out," he said. "There are no mature spawners on the Japanese market. A third of the fish that are being sold are under the legal size. What's coming together now is that everybody knows there's no fish left in the sea. They probably caught them all in 2007, while we were filming it. This is Europe's great fisheries disaster."

More on Over-Fishing of the OceanCelebrities Tell Nobu to Stop Serving TunaIs This the End of the Line for Fishing

Tags: Activism | Conservation | Ecology | Endangered Species | Fish