How can we forge an economically viable, environmentally sound and socially responsible vision for the use of ocean’s natural resources without compromising those of future generations? This question was posed by the Minister of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries, Mr Senzeni Zokwana at the launch of the Status of Marine Fisheries Resources report in Cape Town.
This morning Minister Zokwana had joined industry leaders and DAFF fisheries leadership on the commemoration of World Oceans Day. The Minister used the day to call for the development of more marine scientists for the development of the fisheries sector for food security.
“Fish supply the greatest percentage of the world’s protein consumed by humans, making the Oceans critical to Food Security. We know that achieving food security in its totality continues to be a challenge for the whole world and in particular for the developing nations when you consider the proportion of the population affected. According to FAO, most of the world’s major fisheries are being fished at levels above their maximum sustainable level with a number of fish stocks completely depleted. The development of new fisheries remains a critical part of government, hence the launch of Operation Phakisa as a means to unlock our oceans economy.”
Our planet comprises 71% of the Ocean. It is the most important life-support systems on earth, and almost all humans on Earth depend on the sea natural resources. Half of the World’s population lives with 200kms of the Coastline. Oceans produce 50 percent of the oxygen necessary for human survival and therefore, the sustainable use and management of the Oceans even its resources, is therefore critical to us today and for the future generation.
According to FAO, most of the world’s major fisheries are being fished at levels above their maximum sustainable level with a number of fish stocks completely depleted.
Status of Marine Fisheries Resources
The Status of the South African Marine Fishery Resources is a bi-annual publication that presents and summarises the current status of South Africa’s fishery resources. This report presents the most recent information and analyses of the status of the marine living resources in seventeen fishery sectors of South Africa.
The research and scientific assessments of the fish stocks form part of an important suite of valuable indicators directing the overall management system of the country’s marine resources. South Africa has a long history of excellence in marine science, including in research and applied research relating to the management of marine living resources.
Minister Zokwana says while research alone cannot prevent stocks from crashing, it remains one of the key components of the overall management system which includes resource management and monitoring, control and surveillance.
Government declared 16 June as the National Youth Day and June as the Youth Month. This year we are celebrating the National Youth Day and the Youth Month under the theme: “Youth moving South Africa forward” and in honour of youth who sacrificed their lives for a just South Africa in 1976.
In partnership with Santos, the people’s team, who have now become food security ambassadors, we are encouraging young people to join our efforts to “kick off for food security’ and take up careers in the sector.
Source : South African Government