World Aquaculture Society Meetings

Add To Calendar 22/02/2017 12:00:0022/02/2017 12:20:00America/ChicagoAquaculture America 2017COMPARATIVE ANALYSIS OF U.S. FEDERAL AQUACULTURE MANAGEMENT TO THE FAO CERTIFICATION GUIDELINES: AQUACULTURE FOR RESTORATION AND IMPACT MITIGATION   Salon BThe World Aquaculture Societyjohnc@was.orgfalseanrl65yqlzh3g1q0dme13067DD/MM/YYYY


Michelle L. Walsh and Robert C. Jones
Florida Keys Community College
Key West, FL 33040

In 2011, the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) published Technical Guidelines on Aquaculture Certification and currently an assessment is underway to establish conformance of U.S. aquaculture management to these internationally-accepted criteria.  The assessment will highlight strengths of the U.S. management system at the federal level and will elucidate where further efforts to address FAO guidelines may be beneficial.

The objective is to evaluate conformance of U.S. aquaculture management processes relative to the "Minimum Substantive Criteria" section of the Aquaculture Guidelines. The Aquaculture Guidelines, in addition to most ecolabelling and certification schemes, concentrate on evaluating discrete management techniques implemented on an individual aquaculture operation basis; however, the approach of this conformance assessment focuses on the management system as a whole rather than that of an individual operation. Sustainability may be assessed better by focusing on the overarching management system. This takes the focus from a snapshot of one operation in isolation, to looking instead at the capacity of the system to respond to impacts via management measures in all operations under a given jurisdiction.

The conformance assessment will evaluate how U.S. aquaculture management meets each of the criteria listed within the "Minimum Substantive Criteria" by describing applicable statutes as well as regulations, guidelines, and policies at the federal level. A discussion section on highlighted operations or products will illustrate how aquaculture is managed and provide evidence that corroborates conformance.

In the Aquaculture Guidelines, Minimum Substantive Criteria are established to address environmental integrity (among other aspects of sustainability). For example:

∙βAquaculture certification schemes should encourage restoration of habitats and sites damaged by previous uses in aquaculture.

∙βEvaluation and mitigation of the adverse impacts on surrounding natural ecosystems, including fauna, flora and habitats should be carried out.

Examples of growing practices that demonstrate/ enhance ecosystem services, scientific studies that quantify the ecosystem services provided by aquaculture, and efforts to incorporate the ecosystem services of aquaculture into regulatory decisions may help to strengthen conformance between U.S. aquaculture management and the FAO Guidelines.

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