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World Fisheries Day:
November 21st, 2015

World Fisheries Day was established to draw attention to overfishing, habitat destruction and other serious threats to the sustainability of our marine and freshwater resources.  Observance can also help bring awareness of the importance of aquatic environments in sustaining life both in and out of water. Through participation in engaging classroom activities on this special day, young people can be encouraged to help make a difference in the health of our aquatic ecosystems and the variety of species they support.

Why Care about Fisheries?

  • Fisheries and aquaculture employ more than 43 million individuals worldwide.
  • More than 25% of the world’s dietary protein is provided by fish.
  • The human population consumes over 100 million metric tons of fish annually 
  • Each year the Canadian fishery lands over 1 million metric tons of fish valued in excess of 2 billion dollars.
  • Globally, annual fisheries exports are valued at 85 to 90 billion dollars.
  • A recent United Nations study reported that more than two-thirds of the world's fisheries have collapsed or are currently being overfished. Much of the remaining one third is in a state of decline because habitat degradation from pollution and climate change.
  • The largest Northern Cod fishery in the world was located off the coast of Newfoundland.  This engine of the Newfoundland economy collapsed in the early 1990’s due to overfishing and poor fisheries management.  Ten years later Newfoundland’s cod fishery remains closed.
  • Escalating amounts of point and non-point pollution continue to threaten water quality and fish habitat
  • All natural fish stocks today contain at least trace amounts of mercury.

Resources 4 Rethinking encourages students and teachers to participate in World Fisheries Day.  Top R4R Picks will connect you to some excellent resources to support these efforts.

Other Classroom Resources from Learning for a Sustainable Future

For more information and activities be sure to check out the World Fisheries Day website.