But in 2018, the U.S. Coast Guard observed a Chinese-flagged vessel deploying a 5.6-mile long gill net in international waters off the coast of Japan. They detained the Run Da and found in its hold 80 tons of illegally caught chum salmon and a ton of illegally caught squid. It was a wake-up call for Canada. It was time to start taking illegal, unreported and unregulated fishing seriously again.
While the UN’s Food and Agriculture Organization estimates global losses of 11 to 26 million tonnes of fish worth between $10 billion and $23 billion a year to illegal, unreported and unregulated fishing, the fact is we just don’t know how bad the problem is. Canada, the U.S., and Japan are teaming up to change that.