PEI

Canada's tuna conservation position pleases environmental group

Canada has made 'the right decision' over quotas at an international meeting on the tuna fishery in Portugal, says the Halifax-based Ecology Action Centre.

Canada will not increase tuna quota, says Ecology Action Centre

A new assessment of tuna stocks has been delayed until next year. (P.E.I. Tuna Charters)

Canada has made 'the right decision' over quotas at an international meeting on the tuna fishery in Portugal, says the Halifax-based Ecology Action Centre.

Officials from Ottawa agreed with the call at ICCAT not to increase the amount of tuna Canadian fishermen are allowed to catch, says the group.

Katie Schleit is part of the marine team at the Ecology Action Centre. (CBC)

Katie Schleit, senior marine campaign coordinator with the centre, is attending the ICCAT meetings.

"We thought it was the right decision, and we were pleased to see Canada support it," said Schliet.

"They said there wasn't any new scientific information that supported a change in the quota."

A 20-year plan

A stock assessment that was supposed to happen this year has been delayed until next year. The assessment is expected to give more accurate population numbers for the Gulf of St. Lawrence, where some have argued the tuna is abundant.

"ICCAT committed to a 20-year rebuilding plan, and there's only two years left to actually get the stock rebuilt, according to that plan," said Shliet.

"We're only about half of where the stock needs to be, so there's still a lot of work to be done in order to recover the stock."

The assessment is also supposed to more accurately determine how many bluefin tuna from the Mediterranean are mixing with western tuna in Atlantic waters.

With files from Laura Chapin

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