“You're probably wondering why the Navy is up here today,” said Rear Adm. Tim Gallaudet, Oceanographer of the U.S. Navy, who moderated a panel regarding the sustainment of fisheries around the world's oceans at a conference at the State Department attended by President Barack Obama, Secretary of State John Kerry and actor Leonardo DiCaprio.
“We do much to support this [combating illegal unregulated unreported fishing] through the detection and the monitoring of illegal fishing using our very vast maritime domain awareness capabilities and surveillance assets on the sea, in the air and even under the sea,” Gallaudet said. “The Navy is very invested in this area. The whole key is, this will build our regional partnerships and advance collective maritime security.”
The panel was made up of fishery experts from around the world, who examined options that fishery management authorities may use to combat overfishing and mitigate adverse impacts on the broader marine environment.
The panel was part of a two-day conference titled Our Ocean that in addition to discussing sustainable fisheries focused on issues such as marine protected areas, marine pollution and climate-related impacts on the ocean.
Panelists for Fisheries for the Future included Minister of Marine Affairs and Fisheries of the Republic of Indonesia Susi Pudjiastuti, the Minister for Fisheries and Aquaculture Development of the Republic of Ghana the Honorable Sherry Ayuttey, investigative reporter for the New York Times Ian Urbana, Director of Global Fisheries and Aquaculture Monterey Bay Aquarium Jennifer Kemmerly and Executive Director for the Community and Biodiversity Association Jorge Torre.
Following the panel, world leaders from 16 public and private sector organizations stood to announce detailed pledges in support of sustaining the world's fisheries including fiscal support, new partnerships and resource allocation.
“What we had today was a call for action. In the U.S. Navy, our job is to fight and win at sea and what we have now with us is a threat of Illegal Unreported and Unregulated Fishing that we need to fight and win at sea,” Gallaudet said. “We have a great way ahead now to address these actions and to fight and win this battle.”
Gallaudet serves as a key advisor to the Chief of Naval Operations. As the senior oceanographer in the Navy he provides naval leadership on all issues related to oceanography, meteorology, hydrography, precise time, climate change, the Arctic, maritime domain awareness and geospatial and celestial referencing. He also serves as the senior policy advisor for issues related to national ocean policy and governance.