Mr. Masayoshi Mizuno, Director, Global Environment Division, International CooperationBureau Ahmed Djoghlaf, Executive secretary, CBD
Bluefin Tuna Action:
Support global efforts to protect bluefin tuna
Bluefish tuna (Thunnus thynnus) is an symbol of marine conversation. Thefish can reach more than four metres long and weigh over 600kg. The species is in danger of apopulation crash, but in March, efforts to place the species on the Convention on InternationalTrade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (Cites) most protected list - so-called Appendix 1 – were blocked by Japan and other countries. This would have made internationaltrade illegal. Most trade occurs between the Mediterranean where they are caught, and Japan,where one fish can sell for more than US $100,000. Japan should change its stance on bluefintuna conservation and support a ban on international trade.
Atlantic bluefin tuna stocks have fallen below 15% of their historic levels. Thescientific consensus on the issue is described in a letter to Science in June. It states:“[TheInternational Commission for the Conservation of Atlantic Tunas] Scientiﬁc Committeeconcluded (1) that there was a 95% probability that BFT [bluefish tuna] had declined to theextent that it would qualify for an Appendix I listing. This conclusion was endorsed by themajority.”
Okinawa Island Action:
Preserve the biodiversity on Okinawa Island
Okinawa Island is the largest island in the subtropical Ryukyu chain off thesouth-western coast of mainland Japan – and has been described as “with some stretch of theimagination, Japan’s equivalent of Hawaii”. A quarter of the Yanbaru forest on the northern tipof the island is occupied by a US army base. There are already 22 US military helipads in thetraining area in Yanbaru, but a further seven helipads are planned within two of the best-preserved areas of the base. Appropriate legislation for conserving this region should beestablished, and the Okinawa defense bureau, who are commissioned to build the helipads,should consider alternative sites that will not impact Okinawa’s unique biodiversity.
Yanbaru’s forests are the final stand for a number of threatened endemic speciessuch as the critically endangered Okinawa spiny rat (Tokudaia muenninki), Noguchi’swoodpecker (Dendrocopos noguchii) and Namiye’s frog (Limnonectes namiyei). Yanbaru’snatural forests are critical habitat for many of Okinawa Island’s native mammal and birdpopulations, but they are being destroyed by clearcutting and the removal of undergrowth. A