STATEMENT

Fisheries and Oceans Canada

STATEMENT

Annual full science stock assessments for Northern cod to begin in 2017-18

April 19, 2017

 

ST. JOHN’S, NL - Fisheries and Oceans Canada (DFO) recognizes the cultural and economic importance of Northern cod stocks to the fishers and communities of Newfoundland and Labrador. In light of this, and in keeping with recent recommendations of both the House of Commons Standing Committee on Fisheries and Oceans and the 2+3KLNO Groundfish Advisory Committee, DFO (Newfoundland and Labrador Region) will commence full stock assessments beginning in winter 2018 and continuing for the next five years. These assessments will enhance our understanding of Northern cod stocks and better inform management decisions, which could ultimately benefit fishers and communities who use this iconic resource.

Northern cod stocks have been increasing since the mid-2000s. While this trend continued in 2016, the stocks still remain in the lower half of the critical zone. DFO scientists have been studying the impact of changing ocean conditions on our fisheries resources, including Northern cod, and on our ecosystems more generally. The Department continues to do this important work. Over the next five years, DFO science staff will monitor changes in Northern cod closely and carry out full stock assessments each year at a cost of approximately $2.75 million per assessment.

All DFO science advice follows a rigorous peer-review process. Fish harvesters sit at the table with our scientists when reviewing the state of fish stocks, and the results of science assessments are shared publicly. Our fisheries management decisions are evidence-based, using the best available science, with the ultimate goal of conserving our important fishery resources so that they are available now and for future generations of Canadian fishers.

Kevin G. Anderson
Regional Director General
Fisheries & Oceans, Newfoundland & Labrador Region

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