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NASCO Becomes the First RFMO to Undertake Three Performance Reviews

The 2005 UN Resolution on Sustainable Fisheries (UNGA 60/31) encouraged States, through their participation in RFMOs such as NASCO, to begin a process to review their performance. NASCO is the first RFMO to hold three such performance reviews, with the most recent review reporting to Council in 2023.

A panel made up of three external experts (Jean-Jacques Maguire (Fisheries Science), Philip McGinnity (Salmon Management and Conservation ) and Erik J. Molenaar (Marine / Fisheries Law)) worked together to address the Terms of Reference that had been set for the review. Their report contained 46 recommendations and is available here.

Erik Molenaar chaired the panel and presented its report to Council at a Special Session during the 2023 Annual Meeting. Following a lengthy Question and Answer session, NASCO’s Parties agreed that relaunching NASCO’s focus on restoring and conserving wild Atlantic salmon was urgently needed.

Council therefore agreed to establish the Working Group on the Future of NASCO (WGFON) (Terms of Reference available here) to propose a Strategy and Action Plan directed at the urgent need to conserve, restore, enhance and rationally manage wild Atlantic salmon in the context of the climate change emergency.

The WGFON was also asked to consider the Strategy and Action Plan in the context of developing the fourth reporting cycle and develop Terms of Reference for a Working Group on Future Reporting. To facilitate this, the IP / APR Review Group was asked to explore options for the fourth reporting cycle which would focus on outcomes, identifying the main challenges and possible outcomes and the third reporting cycle was extended by one year.

The WGFON has been working to address its Terms of Reference inter-sessionally and the Draft Strategy and Action Plan will be considered by Council during a Special Session at the 2024 Annual Meeting.

The EPR Panel at work at NASCO HQ