Policy Briefing. Co-Management of Coastal Fisheries in Hawaiʻi: Overview and Prospects for Implementation
14 Pages Posted: 7 Apr 2015
Date Written: October 23, 2012
Communities across Hawai‘i continue to depend on marine resources and habitats as a significant source of sustenance, and for important recreational and cultural practices that are part of the heritage of the islands. Fishing and gathering remain a central aspect of Hawaiian communities in terms of their sociocultural significance and for food security, yet many fisheries resources and habitats have declined significantly. In the past several decades, the State’s enforcement of rules governing fisheries has been minimal due to chronic resource limitations. As a result, many communities across Hawai‘i have expressed concerns with the current management and regulatory regime for coastal fisheries resources and habitats. One management alternative that has gained significant attention is community-based subsistence fishing areas (CBSFAs) and the development of management partnerships between State resource management agencies and community groups. Co-management of coastal fisheries has a short but interesting history in the Hawaiian Islands. Although two co-management pathways exist, ultimately both routes must pass through an onerous rulemaking process, complicating implementation. In this policy brief we examine this process and discuss the prospects for implementation in Hawai‘i.
Keywords: Co-management, Environmental policy, Small-scale fisheries, Hawai‘i
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