National Coalition for Marine Conservation (NCMC) president Ken Hinman was re-appointed in February to serve another two-year term (2009-2010) as an advisor to the United States government on conservation issues that come before the International Commission for the Conservation of Atlantic Tunas (ICCAT). The next meeting of the ICCAT Advisory Committee is April 5-7 in Silver Spring, MD. The committee will meet two more times this fall as it prepares for the November 2009 ICCAT meeting in Brazil.
Hinman served on the U.S. Delegation to ICCAT in Morocco in 2008, where the plight of bluefin tuna dominated the agenda. His assessment of ICCAT's failure to make the cuts necessary to save the species was published in the Winter 2009 issue of the NCMC Marine Bulletin (see "Blues for the Bluefin Tuna"). The fall 2009 meeting will be the last chance for ICCAT to revise its bluefin conservation program before the January 2010 meeting of the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species (CITES), which is expected to consider a petition to end all global trade in the highly-valuable but severely depleted giant among tunas.