Interview of the Week, Teresa Ish, Walton Family Foundation

Teresa Ish is a Senior Program Officer at the Walton Family Foundation, where she oversees the foundation’s work conserving oceans and fisheries in the U.S. and through changing market practices to improve sustainability.  Here are some of the highlights of the interview:

On Persuading Businesses to Be More Sustainable:

“If you run a seafood business and there aren’t fish in the ocean it’s really hard to keep selling fish.  So this is one of those environmental issues where there is actually quite a bit of alignment across the board with companies and fishers who are thinking about the long-term success of their businesses.”

What Does Sustainable Mean in Fishing:

“For wild fisheries, a sustainable fishery is one where the management decisions are based on good scientific information. The people fishing for the fish comply with those management rules..and the fishery is operating in a way that doesn’t hurt the ocean ecosystem, but also ensures that there are some fish left in the water to grow in the future.”

On Social Sustainability in Fishing:

“You are starting to see fair trade certified fisheries come out, which ensures that small-scale fishers are being paid fairly for their products just like you would see with coffee or cocoa.”

On Cooking New Types of Fish

“The Eat Seafood America website has great recipes and cooking demos and more ways for you to try new fish.  It is one of the foods that by choosing and loving sustainable seafood we are actually helping fish populations.  So it is nice to have something that is both good for us and great for the environment.”

Up Next

House Dems Introduce Ocean-Based Climate Solutions Act

House Dems Introduce Ocean-Based Climate Solutions Act

Yesterday at a virtual press conference, House Natural Resources Committee Chair Raúl M. Grijalva (D-Ariz.) unveiled his Ocean-Based Climate Solutions Act along with co-lead, House Select Committee on the Climate Crisis Chair Kathy Castor. In Grijalva’s own words, the bill aims to provide a roadmap for ocean and coastal climate resilience, and responsibly uses them […]

Continue Reading 985 words
Deep-Sea Corals Gain Protection in the Gulf of Mexico

Deep-Sea Corals Gain Protection in the Gulf of Mexico

Last week the federal government approved protections for 500 square miles of deep-sea coral habitats in the Gulf of Mexico, NOLA.com reported. The rules, approved by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), prohibit fishing with bottom tending nets and other fishing tools that rip apart fragile corals.

Why This Matters: Deep-sea corals live at depths up to 10,000 feet and protect a diverse array of marine life including shrimp, crab, and other fish caught and sold for consumption around the world.

Continue Reading 555 words

Illegal Fishing in Galapagos Threatens Ecosystem and Economy

The LA Times’ Susanne Rust reported on a brewing controversy surrounding China’s notorious “distant water” fishing fleet — it’s 17,000 vessels strong and has conducted dubious fishing operations off the coasts of West Africa, Argentina, and Japan.

Why this Matters: The Galapagos Islands hold a bounty of flora and fauna; 20% of the species found in the Galapagos aren’t found anywhere else in the world.  Illegal fishing in the region is anything but new, but in late August 2020, the number of illegal fishing vessels exploded.

Continue Reading 579 words

Want the planet in your inbox?

Subscribe to the email that top lawmakers, renowned scientists, and thousands of concerned citizens turn to each morning for the latest environmental news and analysis.