15 years of maintaining MSC’s standard for sustainable fishing has earned the Western Rock Lobster Council (WRLC) a place among the finalists for the prestigious United Nations Association of Australia (UNAA) World Environment Day Awards, 2015.
In 2000 the Western Australian Rock Lobster fishery took a pioneering step and became the world's first fishery to achieve certification for sustainability to the MSC Fisheries Standard. 15 years on, the fishery remains certified, leading the way for over 370 other fisheries to join the program equating to 11% of global wild capture landings.
A credit to the industry
“To now be a finalist for this UNAA award is a real credit to everyone in the industry who has made all this possible over more than 15 years,” said John McMath, Chief Executive Officer of the Western Rock Lobster Council.
“It has been a sustained and very determined effort by the industry. It demonstrates that the hard work involved in getting to this point has been very worthwhile, and is attracting international recognition.”
The annual awards are run in support of the United Nations World Environment Day, on June 5, recognising innovation and the outstanding environmental initiatives of project leaders. WRLC has been nominated for the Best Specific Environmental Initiative under the Business Awards category.
The fishery was recently recognised at the global Seafood Expo in Brussels, celebrating its 15 years of MSC certification.
Collaboration and continuous improvement
“We are proud to support the Western Rock Lobster Council in their advancement towards being recognised by this esteemed award.' Says Patrick Caleo, MSC Country Manager in Australia.
“WRLC, in partnership with the Department of Fisheries and the fishermen are leaders in collaborative fishery management, and have displayed commitment towards continuously improving how they look after the marine environment.”
Winners of the 2015 World Environment Day Awards 2015 will be announced at the Presentation Dinner to be held at the Park Hyatt Hotel in Melbourne, on Friday June 5. The event will be hosted by Rob Gell, Environmental Entrepreneur and Chairman of UNESCO Western Port Biosphere.
“These national awards play an important role in raising awareness about key environmental challenges and issues facing Australia, they can act as a catalyst for inspiring individuals, organisations and businesses to take positive steps towards sustainability and environmental excellence in their homes, schools, communities and workplaces,' said Mr Caleo.