Advocating for small-scale fishers’ rights and sustainable marine conservation in Türkiye: The Association of Istanbul Fishing Cooperatives (Istanbul Birlik)

Overfishing and the overcapacity of the industrial fishing fleet are putting immense pressure on marine ecosystems and fishers’ livelihoods in Türkiye. In response, small-scale fishing cooperatives in Istanbul, organized under Istanbul Birlik, are rising against this threat. They are working to build an alternative economic model to protect small-scale fishers’ fish, seas, identity, and livelihoods.

Guardians of Moheshkhali: Defending Traditional Ways of Living by the Sea Against Unsustainable Blue Growth 

Launched in 2015, the Matarbari Mega Project seeks to transform Moheshkhali Island into an economic hub, including a coal power plant and port facilities. Despite promises of modernization, the project has caused environmental harm and displaced 20,000 locals, impacting livelihoods and cultural identity. Since 2018, local ocean defenders have protested, resulting in successes like the cancellation of certain coal plants. Yet, the struggle to preserve heritage and environment against industrial expansion persists. This highlights the crucial role of community involvement in development decisions and the ongoing need for a sustainable and culturally sensitive approach to economic growth.

Diambari Sine: Women’s fish processing organization leads the resistance against industrial fisheries and fishmeal factories in Senegal

In Senegal women are central in marketing and processing fishing catches, mainly coastal small pelagics. Despite gaining social status and financial autonomy through this, they face challenges from industrial overfishing and fishmeal production, depleting crucial sardinella stocks. Women-led groups like Diambari sine advocate for sustainable fishing and resist detrimental industrial activities, striving to preserve their maritime culture and ensure sustainable fisheries management.

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