VME post-encounter treatment: Review of other RFMO/As’ practices and the NPFC situation
Following the recommendations of the NPFC/FAO VME Workshop, the SSC VME recognized post-encounter requirements as a high priority task and agreed to prepare a quick reporting protocol to avoid multiple impacts on the same VME site, and also consider a process to introduce provisional area-protection around the encounter location, for example, a box with a set distance around the tow path. This task was further addressed by the VME&BF Data Workshop. The Workshop recommended that the SSC VME Chair and the Secretariat, in cooperation with Members, would prepare a draft post-encounter reporting scheme based on the practices of other RFMOs for consideration by the SSC VME Members. The intention of this working paper is to review practices of other RFMO/As with respect to post-encounter treatment and to summarize potential elements of a post-encounter scheme for consideration by NPFC SSC VME. This working paper includes three sections: 1) post-encounter treatment of other RFMOs, 2) potential elements of NPFC post-encounter treatment, and 3) potential information/data to be reported. Members are invited to consider the elements of post-encounter treatment, potential information/data to be reported in the event of encounter with VME indicators and other issues (area of application, gear, vessels) in order to review the NPFC encounter protocol.