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Data Sources and Methods for the Sustainable Fish Harvest Indicator


The Sustainable Fish Harvest indicator is part of the Canadian Environmental Sustainability Indicators (CESI) program, which provides data and information to track Canada’s performance on key environmental sustainability issues.

The long-term maintenance of the ecological, social and economic value of fish stocks requires controlling harvest to avoid overexploitation. Fisheries and Oceans Canada (DFO), in partnership with industry, implements plans, policies and programs to protect stocks, assist in long-term sustainability, and provide for the fair allocation and distribution of harvestable surpluses among those dependent on the resource, in accordance with the precautionary approach.Footnote [1] This indicator measures compliance with harvest limits as a measure of pressures on wild fish stocks.

Established harvest limits can be exceeded due to a number of factors, including short time-frame competitive fisheries and unforeseen bycatch. These factors are monitored by DFO and corrective actions are taken to address these situations as they arise. Actions include implementing moratoria on fishing when necessary and adjusting harvest limits in future years, to assure conservation is not compromised.


Footnote 1

Fisheries and Oceans Canada (2009) A fishery decision-making framework incorporating the Precautionary Approach. Retrieved on 10 September, 2012.

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