Sustainable Management of Marine Living Resources (fisheries) – A Core Element in the Norwegian Government’s High North Strategy
Summary by Odd Gunnar Skagestad, Deputy Director of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Norway|
Point of departure: Sustainable development - a mantra in world political discourse, combining the twin elements of viz. environment conservation and rational resource management. Key concept in both is sustainability - the sustainable management of our environment and its natural resources: Renewable resources should be harvested responsibly, with due regard to the needs of future generations.
© Govert de Groot, Arctic Peoples Alert
Renewable resources include marine living resources. Management of these resources refers to fisheries in the broad sense – the catching of fish as well as crustaceans and marine mammals.
Norway’s dependence on fisheries – a vital part of our national economy. Therefore, sustainable use, based on scientific advice and the ecosystem approach, is the main objective of Norway’s fisheries management policies.
International cooperation – a network of international legal instruments (e.g. UNCLOS) and cooperation agreements.
The Arctic: Same basic rules and considerations apply here as elsewhere.
A different perspective: The High North. As a political concept (with certain geographical aspects), the High North is elastically defined in the Norwegian Government’s High North Strategy (presented in two policy documents). The Strategy is partly a statement of intents, partly an action programme, including ambitious aims and a broad scope of subject matter.
The High North includes i.a. the Barents Sea – home to some of the world’s richest fish resources, which are also the mainstay of value-creation, employment and livelihood of the population of esp. Northern Norway. These are also core objectives of the High North Strategy.
Responsible management of resources and the environment in the High North is also a transboundary consideration, entailing the need for regional and international cooperation. Such cooperation on fisheries management is well developed in the Barents Sea and adjacent seas.
Rational management of marine, maritime and coastal issues necessitates a broad approach, encompassing and reconciling interests of fisheries, sea transport and petroleum industry. The key-word is co-existence within the parameters of sustainable development.
Norway’s Integrated Management Plan for the Norwegian part of the Barents Sea aims at facilitating long-term value-creation based on the sustainable use of the marine resources, while preserving the structures and productivity of their ecosystems.
The Central Arctic Ocean: No imminent resource management needs, nor a legal void. Such is the position of the 5 coastal states, spelled out in the May 2008 Ilulissat Declaration.
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|Willem Barentsz Poolinstituut|
Bundeling van kennis, onderzoek en onderwijs over de Noord- en de Zuidpool
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