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5 - Fish

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  05 July 2011

Michael Bowman
Affiliation:
University of Nottingham
Peter Davies
Affiliation:
University of Nottingham
Catherine Redgwell
Affiliation:
University College London
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Summary

Background

The need for international regulation of marine fisheries is self-evident given that many fish species spend some or all of their life cycle crossing national maritime zones and/or in areas beyond national jurisdiction. Traditionally, international law recognised freedom of fishing beyond the territorial sea, with legal title to the resource arising only on capture. This led Garrett Hardin in a seminal article in the 1960s to note the ‘tragedy of the commons’: in the absence of ownership and of international co-operation with respect to high-seas fish stocks in particular, the oceans had become a ‘free for all’. Sharks, rays, turtles and tuna are amongst the high-seas stocks which have suffered serious depredation, with several species now listed on CITES Appendices.

As with many other forms of wildlife regulation, the initial impetus for international regulation of fish stocks was conservation of commercially exploited species for economic benefit. Increasingly, however, the conservation of fish stocks as an ultimately exhaustible natural resource and of fish species as part of marine ecosystem management has emerged as an additional objective, and is found reflected in more recent instruments such as the sustainable-use obligations of the 1995 Agreement on Straddling and Highly Migratory Fish Stocks (SSA), considered further below.

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Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Print publication year: 2010

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  • Fish
  • Michael Bowman, University of Nottingham, Peter Davies, University of Nottingham, Catherine Redgwell, University College London
  • Book: Lyster's International Wildlife Law
  • Online publication: 05 July 2011
  • Chapter DOI: https://doi.org/10.1017/CBO9780511975301.007
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  • Fish
  • Michael Bowman, University of Nottingham, Peter Davies, University of Nottingham, Catherine Redgwell, University College London
  • Book: Lyster's International Wildlife Law
  • Online publication: 05 July 2011
  • Chapter DOI: https://doi.org/10.1017/CBO9780511975301.007
Available formats
×

Send book to Google Drive

To send content items to your account, please confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies. If this is the first time you use this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your account. Find out more about sending content to Google Drive.

  • Fish
  • Michael Bowman, University of Nottingham, Peter Davies, University of Nottingham, Catherine Redgwell, University College London
  • Book: Lyster's International Wildlife Law
  • Online publication: 05 July 2011
  • Chapter DOI: https://doi.org/10.1017/CBO9780511975301.007
Available formats
×