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Addressing the causes of aquatic wild meat for sustainable development
by OceanCare (Non-governmental organization (NGO))
Aquatic wild meat (or Aquatic bushmeat) the meat of aquatic wildlife, including mammals, reptile, amphibians and birds, that is harvested for food, medicine, or other traditional uses, including as bait for fisheries, is a growing issue of concern from both a conservation and food security perspective. Conservation and sustainable development are intrinsically linked, and many of the drivers thought to be behind the increased demand for this aquatic wild meat, including fish stock declines, are the same issues that have been identified within the SDGs as being critical to address to end poverty, to protect the planet and to ensure that all people enjoy peace and prosperity.

Aquatic wild meat is an issue across the tropic, temperate, sub-Arctic and Arctic regions. OceanCare's initial work focus is in the West Africa region where there is currently an opportunity to make progress via a proposed, non-binding Abidjan Convention Partnership to Combat Trade, Illegal Logging, Direct Consumption and Other Uses of Endangered, Threatened or Protected Coastal and Marine Species. OceanCare will contribute to this proposed Partnership through projects which will fill the current significant data gaps about scale, trends and drivers in the region, enabling coastal communities and stakeholders to address this issue via locally relevant solutions. OceanCare will also aim to be a driver of action at intergovernmental level which will in turn influence change at national and regional levels around the world.
Progress reports
By 2020, sustainably manage and protect marine and coastal ecosystems to avoid significant adverse impacts, including by strengthening their resilience, and take action for their restoration in order to achieve healthy and productive oceans
Type of commitment
By 2020, effectively regulate harvesting and end overfishing, illegal, unreported and unregulated fishing and destructive fishing practices and implement science-based management plans, in order to restore fish stocks in the shortest time feasible, at least to levels that can produce maximum sustainable yield as determined by their biological characteristics
Type of commitment
By 2020, prohibit certain forms of fisheries subsidies which contribute to overcapacity and overfishing, eliminate subsidies that contribute to illegal, unreported and unregulated fishing and refrain from introducing new such subsidies, recognizing that appropriate and effective special and differential treatment for developing and least developed countries should be an integral part of the World Trade Organization fisheries subsidies negotiation
Type of commitment
By 2030, increase the economic benefits to Small Island developing States and least developed countries from the sustainable use of marine resources, including through sustainable management of fisheries, aquaculture and tourism
Type of commitment
Provide access for small-scale artisanal fishers to marine resources and markets
Type of commitment
December 2018
OceanCare will have secured funding and implemented an evidence building project to empower West African governments and Abidjan Partnership members, with verified information and international support to address the problem of aquatic wild meat in the West African region.
December 2020
OceanCare will have provided West African governments and members of the Abidjan Partnership with sufficient information and international support so that they are able to start implementing appropriate mitigation measures and solutions.
March 2019
OceanCare will have developed a long-term strategy, including the formation of relevant strategic partnerships required to implement it, to address the issue of increasing harvests of aquatic species for aquatic wild meat in West Africa and other countries
November 2017
By November 2017 OceanCare will have made progress within the Convention on Migratory Species of Wild Animals (CMS) towards the establishment of an Aquatic Wild Meat Working Group of the Scientific Council via the support of the Parties to the Convention and recommendations being made to support this work
Staff / Technical expertise
2 Staff in headquarters, one scientist and at least two part-time ocean policy consultations
Financing (in USD)
300,000 USD
In-kind contribution
OceanCare will contribute its time, resources (including staff), networks/connections and participation in various international forums to further the objectives of the proposed Abidjan Partnership and to participate in its development 

Basic information
Time-frame: 2017 March - 2020 December
IGO: Abidjan Convention Partnership: Members of proposed non-binding partnership including West African governments, NGOs, IGOs
Ocean Basins
  • North Atlantic
Beneficiary countries
Other beneficaries
Contact information
Sigrid Lber, President , slueber@oceancare.org, +41 (0) 44 780 66 88
W├Ądenswil, Zurich, Switzerland
Other SDGs
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