Time and Tuna Are Running Out: Greenpeace at 2010 Pacific Tuna Summit

The Western and Central Pacific Fisheries Commission: Honolulu, Hawaii, 6-10 December

Publication - 30 November, 2010
Government officials, fisheries managers and Greenpeace oceans advocates will be attending the annual meeting of the Western and Central Pacific Fisheries Commission meeting, taking place 6-10 December 2010 in Honolulu, Hawaii.


Greenpeace activists hang a banner from Honolulu's Aloha Tower the day before the 2010 WCPFC meeting begins urging tuna conservation.The world and humankind need living oceans to survive, but unfortunately decades of industrial fishing have left Pacific tuna stocks decimated and the health of our oceans in the balance. Time and tuna are running out. Greenpeace demands the Pacific tuna commission  live up to its mandate and protect the region’s tuna stocks.

All Pacific tuna stocks are in decline and bigeye and yellowfin tuna are being overfished. Greenpeace has identified the use of Fish Aggregation Devices (FADs; man-made objects used to attract tuna to nets), used widely by the region’s purse seine fishing fleets as the main culprit in the decimation of juveniles of these two species. This unsustainable fishing method also wastes other marine life, such as sharks and turtles.

Pirate fishing is also a problem in the Pacific, as foreign fishing vessels continue to steal tuna from the region, exploiting four pockets of international waters which flank more than a dozen of Pacific Island Countries. If these tuna species – and the people who depend on them for their livelihoods and for food – are to survive, the WCPFC must act in Honolulu to ensure they do not end up on the same one-way track to commercial extinction that the Atlantic bluefin tuna is on. They must:

  • Close the four high seas pockets to all fishing,
  • ban Fish Aggregation Devices (FADs; man-made objects used to attract tuna to nets) in purse seine fisheries,
  • and reduce tuna fishing efforts in the Pacific by 50% (or halving the amount of fishing).

Greenpeace Briefing Paper for WCPFC 2010

Greenpeace briefing for WCPFC 7: Charting a Course Toward Sustainable Tuna Fisheries

Media Materials

Greenpeace activists hung a banner from Honolulu's Aloha Tower urging "WCPFC: Don't Let Time Run Out on Tuna." Read the news release here.

Greenpeace news release on the close of the 2010 WCPFC meeting without agreement to the Pacific island nations' proposal.


Tuna Sustainability News from the Markets

The Messiest Catch: Greenpeace exposed, through independent genetic testing of tinned tuna products, that consumers are unaware of what tuna they really are eating.

Oceans Advocates: Greenpeace report on how pressure on retailers around the world is helping to transform fisheries management.

Positive Change: Leading UK retailers choose sustainable pole-and-line caught tuna.

Progress in Austria: Retailers commit to go yellow-fin free in their tuna sourcing.

Step Forward Down Under: Australian consumers now have more ocean-friendly choices when it comes to seafood.

Transforming the Japanese Market: Greenpeace launches its seafood guide in Japan in 2010.

Greenpeace Ship Tour Findings

Greenpeace ship expeditions in the Pacific Ocean have brought back immense results: enabling governments to enforce fisheries regulations, documenting illegal, unreported and unregulated pirate fishing and documenting the beauty of our Pacific. Read more about the results of Greenpeace's Pacific ship expeditions in 2006, 2008 and 2009.

Help bring a ship back to the Pacific in 2011 by donating to Greenpeace!



Greenpeace International's Sari Tolvanen explains why the United States has such a key role at this year's Commission meeting, and it's not just because they are hosting the meeting.

Greenpeace USA's Phil Kline writes about the Pacific oceans team's activities on the ground in Honolulu, meeting locals, surfers and speaking truth to the tuna powers at the WCPFC.

Greenpeace Sari Tolvanen asks if the Pacific can provide the sustainable tuna that so many want. Supermarkets are committing to sell responsibly-sourced tuna and the WCPFC continues to drag its feet in Honolulu. Will the meeting produce a result to save the Pacific and its people from a future of empty oceans?

Greenpeace Australia Pacific oceans campaigner Duncan Williams details what's at stake for Pacific Island communities at the WCPFC meeting: their futures.

Greenpeace New Zealand's Karli Thomas offers a wrap-up analysis of the WCPFC, a disappointment for the tuna,  the Pacific and the millions dependent on both for survivial.

Recent Defending the Pacific Tuna Blogs

Our Man in Taiwan

Pacific Tuna Need Our Help!

Farewell, Fishing...

The Trouble with Tuna

Greenpeace's Emergency Oceans Rescue Plan

Oceans Inaction Not an Option at UN Biodiversity Summit

The Truth Behind Cheap Tuna

Changing the Japanese Seafood Market

Greenpeace Reports

Oceans Advocates: Seafood Markets Driving Change

The Emergency Oceans Rescue Plan: A Global Network of Marine Reserves

The Inconvenient Truth of Taiwan's Flag of Convenience Vessels

España: The Destructive Practices of Spain's Fishing Armada

Developing Equitable and Sustainable Fisheries for Skipjack Tuna

Taking Tuna Out of the Can

Pirate Fishing

Learn more about the pirates in our midst by visitng Greenpeace's Blacklist web site, detailing the activities and information behind the vessels plundering our oceans of fish.