Overfishing is one of the persistent environmental challenges of our time. Almost one third of the world’s assessed commercially exploited marine fish stocks are considered overfished. This report, co-authored by researchers at the Environmental Defense Fund and the Nicholas Institute for Environmental Policy Solutions, introduces the idea of a blended capital approach to fill the all-too-common finance gap that may hamper recovery of many fisheries. The report describes the categories of investment required to attain fisheries sustainability at each stage of the recovery process, identifies where within this framework there is likely to be the biggest funding gap, and suggests possible approaches for philanthropic and public capital to leverage private capital to help fill the gap. The authors suggest that if we are able to increase the types and amount of capital available to fund fisheries reform—and utilize one to leverage the others where needed—blended capital approaches may send clearer signals to decision makers that change is not only possible but in everyone’s best interests. In aggregate, such signals could help move us closer to advancing a suite of Sustainable Development Goals that would result in thriving, resilient oceans that support more fish, feed more people, and improve prosperity.
Nicholas Institute for Environmental Policy Solutions