- Off the Hook Community Supported Fishery
- High Seas Protection
- Friends of Hector Shark Conservation
- Marine Planning
- Sable Island Protection
- Oil and Gas Regulation and Moratoria
- SeaChoice: Canada's Sustainable Seafood Program
The ‘Off the Hook’ Community Supported Fishery connects a co-operative of small-scale, groundfish bottom hook and line fishermen from the Bay of Fundy to subscribing customers in and around Halifax. Subscribers pay at the beginning of the season for weekly shares of the co-op’s catch of fresh whole haddock, hake and cod.
Bottom hook and line use minimizes bycatch and habitat damage, and since there are no 'middlemen' involved, fishermen can use ecologically responsible gear and ensure a fair price for their catch. Meanwhile, Off the Hook's subscribers enjoy increased access to the freshest local, traceable, high quality fish.
For more information or to become an Off the Hook subscriber, visit www.offthehookcsf.ca or contact Jordan Nikoloyuk at firstname.lastname@example.org or (902) 442-0999. See also our background information on Coastal Livelihoods and Sustainable Seafood.
The impact of bottom trawl fisheries on the high seas (more than 200 miles from national coastlines) has been unregulated, resulting in the destruction of seafloor ecosystems for decades. Since 2005, the EAC has been an active member of the Deep Sea Conservation Coalition (DSCC). The DSCC called for a moratorium on high seas bottom trawling at the United Nations General Assembly in 2006, and achieved a Sustainable Fisheries Resolution (61/105) that has dramatically changed how high seas fisheries are managed. Several areas on the high seas have been closed to bottom trawling to protect deep-sea corals and sponges, but there is still much work to do. The measures agreed in 2006 must be implemented to protect the vulnerable creatures of the deep-sea.
In September 2011, there will be a review of all the actions that countries and organizations like the Northwest Atlantic Fisheries Organization (NAFO) are conducting impact assessments on their fisheries and that there is protection for vulnerable fish species.
For more information on our work on the high seas, please contact Susanna Fuller at email@example.com or 902-446-4840, or visit www.savethehighseas.org. See also our background information on Sustainable Fisheries & Aquaculture and Fisheries Policy.
The ‘Friends of Hector’ sustainable fisheries campaign was launched to address high levels of bycatch in Atlantic Canada’s surface longline swordfish fishery. This fishery catches 100 000 sharks and 1 400 sea turtles each year, and has the highest bycatch ratio of any fishery in Canada. Threatened and endangered sharks – the porbeagle, shortfin mako, and blue shark – and endangered loggerhead and leatherback sea turtles are caught.
MIC also participates in the Atlantic Large Pelagics Advisory Committee, Species At Risk consultations, and Recovery Potential Analyses for species that have been assessed by the Committee on the Status of Endangered Wildlife in Canada (COSEWIC). We were the first Canadian NGO to attend the International Commission for the Conservation of Atlantic Tuna (ICCAT) meetings as an observer.
Contact Shannon Arnold at firstname.lastname@example.org or (902) 446-4840 for more information, or support Hector by visiting his website, http://www.friendsofhector.org, becoming a friend on facebook, and choosing harpoon-caught swordfish whenever you shop and eat to avoid supporting the surface longline fleet. See also our background information on Sustainable Fisheries & Aquaculture and Fisheries Policy.
Until recently, Nova Scotia’s coasts have been more or less free of large-scale, finfish aquaculture. Applications to expand small scale farms into large-scale feedlots are now threatening our bays and inlets. We are concerned about the impacts of open net-pen finfish farming which include waste, pesticide and antibiotic use, increased parasite loading in adjacent waters, and escapees which can have a devastating impact on wild anadromous fish populations. EAC is supportive of small-scale shellfish farming and closed containment finfish farming as well as the growing of marine algae and plants for human consumption.
We are calling for a moratorium on open net pen finfish aquaculture until adequate regulations are in place, and there is a working Coastal Strategy in Nova Scotia that considers aquacultures impact on wild fish and shellfish populations. We are asking that all aquaculture planning occurs with community consultation, and that government subsidies to aquaculture expansion are removed. EAC is a founding member of the Atlantic Coalition for Aquaculture Reform, a diverse coalition of fishermen’s organizations, conservation groups, coastal communities and salmon anglers. We also work on aquaculture through our partnership in SeaChoice.
For more information, contact Rob Johnson at email@example.com or 902-446-4840 and see Friends of Port Mouton Bay who successfully fought against fin fish aquaculture expansion. See also our background information on Coastal Livelihoods, Sustainable Fisheries & Aquaculture, Fisheries Policy and Sustainable Seafood.
Managing the multiple uses of the ocean is necessary in order to address cumulative environmental impacts and to reduce conflict among ocean users. Ocean zoning or marine spatial planning are tools that can be used to understand human impacts and ensure that protection is part of ocean management. EAC advocates for marine planning off the coasts of Nova Scotia that includes marine protected areas, fishing gear restricted zones and oil and gas moratoria.
Since 2000, EAC has been involved in the Eastern Scotian Shelf Integrated Management (ESSIM) planning process. ESSIM is a multi-stakeholder integrated management process, engaging all ocean users and sectors. EAC sits on the ESSIM Stakeholder Advisory Council and is an active member of the ESSIM ENGO Caucus, together with WWF Canada, the Canadian Parks and Wilderness Society and Sierra Club – Atlantic Chapter. We are also advocating for meaningful marine planning in inshore areas (12 nm from the coast) and collaborating with our Coastal Issues Committee on achieving a coastal planning framework, which does not currently exist in Nova Scotia.
Sable Island is a unique island ecosystem off the coast of Nova Scotia. It is known for its historical ship wrecks, and its flora and fauna, which includes wild horses, seals and song birds. It is very important that all those who care about Sable Island remain vigilant to ensure that we do not love the island to death and that there is continued funding to keep the Research Station open year round. It is also important that oil and gas drilling be kept as far away from the island as possible.
For almost a decade, the EAC has been working with the Greenhorse Society and other groups and individuals to protect the island and ensure that there is a year-round human presence. Working closely with Zoe Lucas, island naturalist, and citizens from across Canada and the world, the EAC was successful in getting government to commit to funding until 2012 for the Sable Island Station. The 2010 announcement that Sable Island will become a national park is welcome news. Together with other organizations, the EAC hosts an annual Sable Island update, usually the first week of March.
Atlantic Canada has the highest percentage of coast open to oil and gas exploration and drilling anywhere in North America. EAC is concerned about the impacts of seismic blasting, the discharge of produced water and other wastes, and the consequences of large spills, such as the BP Gulf spill. As an alternative to drilling in more and more extreme environments, the EAC supports energy conservation and renewable energy sources.
For over a decade, we have worked with partners in the fishing industry and coastal communities, in a coalition called No Rigs, to achieve a moratorium on oil and gas drilling on Georges Bank. In 2010, the Nova Scotia Government passed a bill that extended the current moratorium until 2023. The Centre is currently working with fishing, tourism and environmental groups including Save Our Seas and the Coalition Saint Laurent to implement a similar moratorium in the Gulf of St. Lawrence. The BP Gulf Spill, if super-imposed on the Gulf of St. Lawrence, can touch the shores of all five Maritime provinces.
For more information, please contact Mark Butler at firstname.lastname@example.org or 902-429-5286 or Susanna Fuller at email@example.com or 902-446-4840. See also our background information on Marine Spatial Planning.
One of the main drivers of fisheries reform and “change on the water” is through the actions of consumers and retailers who are demanding that their seafood be sustainably caught. In 2006, The Ecology Action Center and four other Canadian conservation organizations – Canadian Parks and Wilderness Society, the David Suzuki Foundation, Living Oceans Society and Sierra Club British Columbia – launched SeaChoice to help Canadians take an active role in supporting sustainable fisheries and aquaculture at all levels of the seafood supply chain.
SeaChoice undertakes science-based seafood assessments, provides informative resources for consumers, and supports businesses through collaborative partnerships. The EAC is responsible for all east coast outreach and program implementation. SeaChoice member organizations are active participants in the North American wide Conservation Alliance for Seafood Solutions.
For more information on SeaChoice, contact firstname.lastname@example.org. For specific questions regarding east coast fisheries contact Rob Johnson at email@example.com or Susanna Fuller at firstname.lastname@example.org or (902) 446-4840. See also our background information on Coastal Livelihoods, Sustainable Fisheries & Aquaculture and Sustainable Seafood.
Phone: (902) 446-4840
Fax: (902) 405-3716
Are you interested in mysterious sea creatures, fishing boats and gear, tasty and sustainably caught seafood dishes, or the unique and beautiful Sable Island? Then you’ll be in good company at our monthly Marine Issues Committee (MIC) at the Ecology Action Centre on the last Tuesday of every month at 5:30.
Check out our Small Scales blog