New Zealand hails inclusion of fishery goals in Rio+20 discussions
Wellington, June 21 (Xinhua-ANI): The goal of enabling small island states to get a greater return from fishery resources has been included in discussion in the Rio+20 outcome document, New Zealand Environment Minister Amy Adams announced Thursday.
"This is a great step and shows that the international community recognizes the need for urgent collective action to address the state of our oceans," Adams said in a statement.
"This is an area that we believe can deliver real and substantial economic, social and environmental global benefits," she said.
"The text in the outcome document commits to further improvement of regional fisheries management, and actions to crack down on illegal, unregulated and unreported fishing.
"The text clearly registers the importance of small island developing states and getting a greater share of the return from their fisheries resources. This has been a long-standing New Zealand and Pacific goal."
The outcome document also endorsed the United Nation's process to assess the health of the oceans, and locked in the global goal of having 10 percent of the world's oceans in marine-protected areas.
New Zealand was particularly concerned about harmful fisheries subsidies, Adams said.
"These only add to the worsening state of global fish stocks, distort trade and undermine sustainable development.
"Some governments subsidize new fishing boats when the world already has too many, some subsidize fishing industries that are targeting already over-fished stocks, and others even give subsidies to fishing entities linked to illegal fishing."
New Zealand was also pushing for an end to government subsidies for fossil fuels at the United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development.
"Fossil fuel subsidy reform is becoming an important internationally, as we've seen from a number of civil society campaigns in the lead up to the conference," she said.
"Phasing out fossil fuel subsidies over the medium term would deliver significant benefits for a greener economy and the climate.
"We are mindful that reform will have consequences for poorer populations, and needs to be done progressively, but money spent on fossil fuels is huge.
"This is money that could be spent on other sustainable development priorities. Some countries spend more on fossil fuel subsidies than they do on health or education." (Xinhua-ANI)
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