GENEVA, Nov. 7 /PRNewswire/ -- Ted Danson, award-winning actor and
longtime ocean advocate, met with World Trade Organization (WTO) Director-
General Pascal Lamy tonight about the threat subsidies pose to the world's
fisheries and how the WTO can halt this major catalyst of global
overfishing. Danson's visit to Geneva coincides with a critical point in
ongoing WTO negotiations on fisheries subsidies in which a draft agreement
is expected within weeks.
(Photo: http://www.newscom.com/cgi-bin/prnh/20071107/NEW163 )
"The WTO has a vital contribution to make in protecting the world's
fish stock, in saving it from depletion," said Lamy.
Oceana, the world's largest organization dedicated to protecting and
restoring the world's oceans, also released a new paper this week that
offers 5 steps the WTO can take to promote sustainability in a trade
agreement on fisheries subsidies. Some key recommendations include that
subsidies should only be provided to fisheries that are not overexploited
and by countries that have effective fishery management systems in place.
"It is time we start thinking of blue as the new green," said Danson.
"If we want the world to be able to eat fish and make a living off of the
oceans, we must stop the subsidies that are driving the collapse of the
A 2006 study by a leading team of international fishery scientists
concluded that the 29 percent of the world's fisheries are in collapse and
if current overfishing trends continue all commercial fish populations will
be beyond repair within decades (by 2048). A recent study by the University
of British Columbia estimates harmful subsidies -- those that promote
fishing capacity -- to be at least $20 billion annually, an amount
equivalent to approximately 25 percent of the value of the world catch.
About Ted Danson: You might know Ted Danson from his lead role in the
hit TV series Cheers, but for over twenty years he has been dedicated to
marine conservation. Danson began his environmental career in 1987 when he
started the American Oceans Campaign. In 2001, he joined forces with Oceana
to create a greater global impact for the world's oceans and today remains
seated on Oceana's board of directors.
About Oceana: Oceana campaigns to protect and restore the world's
oceans. Our teams of marine scientists, economists, lawyers and advocates
win specific and concrete policy changes to reduce pollution and to prevent
the irreversible collapse of fish populations, marine mammals and other sea
life. Global in scope and dedicated to conservation, Oceana has campaigners
based in North America (Washington, DC; Juneau, AK; Monterey, CA; Portland,
OR), Europe (Madrid, Spain; Brussels, Belgium) and South America (Santiago,
Chile). More than 300,000 members and e-activists in over 150 countries
have already joined Oceana.