Sustainable Aquaculture Development in the U.S.-Affiliated Pacific Islands

Sustainable Aquaculture Development in the U.S.-Affiliated Pacific Islands
Cheng-Sheng Lee
Publication Year
The U.S.-affiliated Pacific Islands include American Samoa, the Republic of the Marshall Islands (RMI), the Federated States of Micronesia (FSM), the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands (CNMI), Guam, and the Republic of Palau (Palau). This region, composed of thousands of tiny islands widely spread between the latitudes of 15º N to 14º S and the longitudes of 134º E to 170º W, extends across an area as large as the continental United States (U.S.). Despite a total land area of only 2,558 km2, or about 1.4 times of Jeju Island, the political status of the different islands includes three independent countries and three territories. These islands are divided into three main physiographical types: high volcanic islands, raised limestone islands, and low coral atolls. The available arable land in the region is very limited. Islanders rely heavily on importation to supply most of their daily life necessities.RMI, FSM and Palau have received financial aid from the U.S. under the Compacts of Free Association agreement and other foreign countries. Leasing fishing rights to foreign countries is one of the major sources of government income other than the leasing of certain islands to the U.S. for military purposes. Tourism is an important industry for Palau, Guam, and the CNMI, but has yet to be developed in other parts of the region. To achieve financial independence, this region has to utilize its natural resources to create industries and generate revenues. The region is resources poor regarding economic development, but has the best unique natural resources such as pristine water, year round warm weather, and abundant fisheries in the surrounding waters. To fully benefit from the abundant fish stocks, islanders have to develop fishing technologies to manage the fish stock instead of leasing fishing rights. In an effort to take advantage of the warm climate and pristine seawater, international funding agencies have provided funds to support aquaculture de
Bibliographic Citation
The 2nd SPIRITS Workshop, pp.5 - 6, 2007
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