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What we do
Премия рунета 2017

Sustainable fisheries development

Conservation of fish resources

Fish is one of the main riches of the Barents region, and our task is to preserve marine life for future generations, making fishing in the Barents Sea more environmentally friendly. This opportunity arose with the development of MSC certification of the Russian cod and haddock fishery, which was actively promoted by WWF. Thanks to this, 90% of fish in the Barents Sea are now harvested in accordance with the principles of sustainable fisheries.

The bottom trawl fishery still causes significant damage to the inhabitants of the Barents Sea. The bottom trawl is a fishing gear for cod and haddock. In the process of fishing, like a bulldozer, it cuts off sedentary inhabitants of seabed: sponges, corals, sea feathers. The World Wildlife Fund seeks to introduce new, gentle models of bottom trawls and to limit trawling in the most vulnerable sea areas.

© Alexander Pavlenko
Cod fished in the Barents Sea © Alexander Pavlenko
Fishing boat in the Barents Sea © Alexander Pavlenko
© Vadim Shtrek

Another fundamental problem that we are working on is the dumping of fishing bycatch. For various reasons, fishermen try to choose the most valuable part of the catch. The rest of the fish, for example, smaller, substandard or species that are not in demand on the market are thrown overboard, but already in a dead state. The amount of such discharge can be enormous. WWF specialists studied this phenomenon and developed a strategic plan to combat it.

Special care is required for the wild populations of Atlantic salmon, which are still preserved in the rivers of the Kola Peninsula. Until the middle of the last century, there existed a centuries-old harvest of salmon or royal fish, as it was called from time immemorial. But now it has become mainly an object of license fishing. In recent years there has been a rapid decline in the Varzug salmon population, which is the largest in the world. And our task is to preserve it for future generations.

Finally, in recent years, a new threat has arisen for wild populations of Atlantic salmon and coastal ecosystems of the Kola Peninsula. Rapid development of cage aquaculture of salmons can lead to the most negative environmental consequences. WWF specialists studied these threats and prepared proposals and recommendations for their reduction.