Following the joint public announcement on September 30th 2020 by the Government and the Bermuda Economic Development Corporation [BEDC] about the launch of the Bermuda Triangle Fishing Cooperative [BTFC], and the stated intent to “significantly increase Bermuda’s annual local catch”, BEST reached out for further details on the initiative. On October 16th, BEST submitted a letter of inquiry to the Premier, the Minister of Home Affairs and BEDC Chairperson, Jamahl Simmons.
Bermuda’s fish stock has been in decline for over 50 years. An announcement by the government indicating a plan that might accelerate this process raises serious questions. Undertaking a project like this is an issue of national interest and requires an awareness of the relationship between sustainable fishing and the future impact of the climate crisis on our marine environment.
This past year was and continues to be challenging for all of us. We understand the motivation to restart the economy, however, that must not come at the expense of our natural environment. The sustainability of our island’s resources is in the long-term interest of all people in the country. The people of Bermuda have the right to hear the details concerning any significant changes to how we make use of a critical resource such as our fisheries.