At CCAMLR-XXV, the Scientific Committee noted that the implementation of the observer program and the application of observer requirements could be improved by adopting a standard approach to education and training for observers in these fisheries (SC-CAMLR-XXV, paragraph 2.11). A review of current levels of education and training for observers was undertaken by the Secretariat. Information provided by participating Members was reviewed and common elements, differences and gaps in existing national programs were identified. Nine main aspects of training and education considered important for scientific observers were identified, these are: role of the scientific observer; vessel and fishing operations; catch estimation; gear configuration; species identification; sampling techniques and requirements; data handling and reporting procedures; sea survival and safety; and the CAMLR Convention and CCAMLR conservation measures in force. The Secretariat believes that in order to achieve a consistent approach to education and training for scientific observers, Members would need to: further develop and agree upon a set of training and education standards; consider ways to meet and maintain these standards; and develop a method of providing recognition to national programs that meet these standards. Adopting a consistent approach to education and training for observers would improve the CCAMLR Scheme for International Scientific Observation. Also to improve observer data quality, Members could convene training workshops for national technical coordinators, as has been discussed previously (SC-CAMLR-XVII, Annex 5, paragraph 3.79, SC-CAMLR-XX, Annex 5, paragraph 3.50), and/or increase their attendance at the meetings of WG-FSA and WG-IMAF.
SC-CAMLR-XXVI/BG/09 Rev. 1