2014 ICCAT Meeting

At the 2014 Special meeting of the International Commission for the Conservation of Atlantic Tunas (ICCAT) in Italy, members met and adopted multi-year total allowable catch (TAC) levels for bluefin tuna, amendments to the tropical tunas management measure, and terms of reference for the next scientist-manager dialogue meeting.

Atlantic Bluefin Tuna

The latest stock assessment for Atlantic bluefin tuna reflected an improvement in the status for both western and eastern Atlantic/Mediterranean stocks. The Commission adopted new management measures that are within the range of scientific advice, are consistent with the respective rebuilding plans, and allow
for continued stock growth.

The TAC for the western stock was set at 2,000 mt annually for 2015 and 2016. The TAC for the eastern Atlantic/Mediterranean stock was set at 16,142 t for 2015; 19,296 t for 2016; and 23,155 t for 2017.

ICCAT agreed to hold a second meeting to improve the dialogue between scientists and managers and, in concert, a third meeting of a similar working group established for western bluefin tuna, where efforts to improve the framework for making management decisions will continue.

Tropical Tunas

The Commission also considered the management of tropical tunas, including skipjack, which had been assessed in 2014 by ICCAT’s scientific committee. The Commission created a working group to better evaluate the effects of a fishing technique utilizing fish aggregating devices (FADs) on tropical tuna species, in order to improve management advice for this fishery.

Atlantic Ocean Tropical Tuna Tagging Program

The Standing Committee on Research and Statistics presented a five-year strategic plan, and the Commission approved an Atlantic Ocean Tropical Tuna Tagging Program with a total budget of almost 20 million euros over the next 5 years.

source: NOAA Fisheries