There are a number of steps that CCAMLR and its members can take to improve the governance and control of fishing vessels in the Southern Ocean and thereby enhance safety, ecosystem-based management and environmental protection. These include mandatory requirements for appropriate ice-strengthening and obtaining IMO numbers for all vessels, reports on all vessel incidents, and notification of Maritime Rescue Coordination Centres (MRCCs) when entering or leaving Search and Rescue (SAR) areas. Additionally, it would be valuable for CCAMLR to encourage the IMO to include fishing vessels in the Polar Code at the earliest opportunity. CCAMLR Members should also support efforts to bring the new Cape Town Agreement, replacing the Torremolinos Protocol, into force, which would improve fishing vessel safety globally.
Sarah Mackey (CCAMLR Secretariat)