Commercial catch volumes within the Marshall Islands EEZ are dominated by the purse seine fishery. In 2014, the estimated total catch for all gears combined was 53,683mt highest in last five years, with purse seiners accounting for 81 percent, longliners at 15 percent, and pole-and-line vessels at four percent.
"Underwater surveys have become a key part of MIMRA's ongoing work to gather the scientific data needed to characterize marine resources and create strategic plans for future sustainability."
MIMRA's Coastal Fisheries Division oversees a variety of programs aimed largely at ensuring conservation and management of domestic fisheries resources and participation of outer island communities in decision-making about resource protection and management for sustainability.
A key component of this is work with outer island communities, including local governments and traditional leaders, to develop resource management plans. This involves MIMRA staff engaging with outer island communities in a process of understanding the need for management plan, identifying resources essential to the sustainability of these remote communities, and drafting a sustainable management plan for inshore or coastal fisheries resources.
"An important benefit of the process was widening the scope of circle of expertise, resources and consultations on sustainable resource management issues."
MIMRA works in collaboration with the Coastal Management Advisory Council (CMAC), which was formed in 2005 to facilitate communication and cooperation among organizations involved in the management and conservation of coastal and marine resources in the Marshall Islands. The first strategic action plan and team charter was developed for CMAC with support and assistance from the Nature Conservancy (TNC) in 2006.
A second strategic action planning workshop was facilitated by TNC November 5-9, 2013, as a key activity for CMAC to pro
The Coastal Fisheries Division continues its commitment to ensure that communities benefit from Outer Islands Fishing Projects and aquaculture/mariculture projects. MIMRA continues to encourage the development of culture fisheries and aquaculture for their potential to contribute to improving national fisheries production capacity and to stimulate local economies.
This project forms part of SPC’s ‘Monitoring the Vulnerability and Adaptation of Coastal Fisheries to Climate Change’ project, funded by AusAID under Australia’s International Climate Change Adaptation Initiative (ICCAI), which aims to detect possible changes in coastal fisheries connected to climate rather than to other pressures on the resource, such as overfishing and habitat degradation.