Healthy ocean ecosystems are vital to maintain fishery productivity. Deterioration of water quality due to pollution with waste from homes and factories affects marine resources. Ocean pollution with plastic and microplastic waste has become severe. Fish and seabirds ingest plastic and microplastic fragments, and microplastics are detected in fish and bivalves in many locations worldwide, which lowers their value as seafood and results in earlier death. In addition, overfishing lowers marine resource sustainability, and illegal, unreported, unregulated fishing is now an international issue, with some tuna and shark species in danger of extinction. Smaller fish numbers increase the cost of catching them, lowering fishery productivity. Sustaining overall marine ecology is therefore important for many reasons.

Some solutions have been proposed. One example is international legal agreements such as the UN Convention on the Law of the Sea and exclusive economic zones that limit the areas of marine resource exploitation by coastal countries. Another example is regional fishery management organizations (RFMOs). A well-known RFMO is the International Commission for the Conservation of Atlantic Tunas (ICCAT). ICCAT’s control of Atlantic bluefin tuna catches led to a change in the species’ category from “endangered” to “of least concern” in the Red List of the International Union for Conservation of Nature in September 2021. A third example is the reduction of plastic use. Many supermarket and other retail chains have stopped offering free plastic shopping bags to customers and limited the use of plastic packaging, which are both important steps.

This course will enhance participants’ understanding of sustainable fisheries in terms of governmental policies and national approaches to conserve marine resources and improve the ocean environment. The APO combines these approaches with the perspectives and benefits of the concept of Green Productivity. This will promote sustainable, productive fisheries in the long term and contribute to meeting the SDGs.

The APO developed this course with the support of Dr. Joji Morishita, Professor, Tokyo University of Marine Science and Technology.

Course Objectives

The main objectives of this course are:

  • Understand global fishery conditions, production, consumption, and resources.
  • Learn about policies and methods for sustainable fisheries by protecting marine habitats, restricting overfishing, and improving the ocean environment.
  • Promote sustainable fisheries and conservation of marine environments and resources.

Course Modules

This e-learning course will cover the following modules:
Module 1: Overview of global fisheries: Production, consumption, and resource conditions
Module 2: Frameworks for conservation and management of fisheries
Module 3: Case studies of conservation and management of fisheries
Module 4: Fisheries and environmental conservation
Module 5: Improving the ocean environment: SDG 14 (Life below water)

Important Notes:

  1. Participants who register to take this course and pass the final examination with a score of 70% or higher will be eligible to receive the APO certificate. Please note that the final examination can be taken only once. Therefore, the most appropriate time to take the examination should be chosen carefully. The self-assessment quizzes are for personal evaluation only and are not related to the final examination results.
  2. Participants who perform well in this course and receive the APO certificate will be given preference, on a merit basis, for selection to attend follow-up face-to-face multicountry APO projects on similar topics, when nominated by their NPOs and if slots are available.
  3. Notes 1 and 2 are applicable only to participants from APO member countries. Participants from nonmember countries are welcome to take the course for self-improvement, although they will not have an opportunity to attend the follow-up face-to-face multicountry APO projects.
  4. Each module is in a prerecorded video format in which the expert delivers presentations by explaining each slide. Participants can access the video by clicking on the link provided under the title of each module.
Course Duration in Hours: 21 hours
Skill Level: Beginner
Upcoming Course: No
New Course: Yes