Daily Digest

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Daily Digest 1/12 - Banking Giant Warns About ‘Cataclysmic Year’, Who Controls Canadian Fisheries?

Tuesday, January 12, 2016, 10:59 AM

Economy

‘Sell everything,’ global banking giant tells investors and brace for ‘cataclysmic year’ (Michael W.)

Andrew Roberts, the bank’s credit chief, said both global trade and loans are contracting, a nasty cocktail for corporate balance sheets and equity earnings, and uncharted waters given that debt ratios have reached record highs.

“China has set off a major correction and it is going to snowball. Equities and credit have become very dangerous, and we have hardly even begun to retrace the ‘Goldilocks’ love-in of the last two years,” he said.

Economic Collapse Happening Now: Rob Kirby (pinecarr)

One of the many lies Kirby points out is the Fed’s recent rate hike because the economy had improved. Kirby disagrees and says, “My analysis says nothing could be further from the truth. . . . U.S. dollar reserve holdings have dropped close to $1 trillion in the last eight or nine months, and that’s on a global scale. What happens when reserves drop means that foreigners have been selling U.S. government securities. They are abandoning the dollar, and if foreigners are abandoning the dollar, the question is who’s buying them? The answer to who is buying the reserves is the U.S. Treasury itself. Specifically, it is the Exchange Stabilization Fund (ESF) within the U.S. Treasury.”

Historic First: North Atlantic Empty of Cargo Ships in-transit - All anchored along coasts; none moving (JDavis)

When retailers do not order goods, manufacturers don't make anything because there are no orders to fill. When manufacturers do not make goods, they don't order raw materials for manufacturing.

When there are no orders for raw materials, commodities sellers do not sell raw materials. When no raw materials are sold, there is no shipping by large cargo ships, (or railroads or tractor trailers) to move anything.

The State of the Nation: A Dictatorship Without Tears (richcabot)

It’s tempting to write this man off as dangerously deluded, treacherously naïve, and clueless to the point of civic incompetence. However, he is not alone in his goose-stepping, comfort-loving, TV-watching, insulated-from-reality devotion to the alternate universe constructed for us by the Corporate State with its government propaganda, pseudo-patriotism and contrived political divisions.

Gold's Last Chance: It's Now Or Never (Taki T.)

As the first table shows, gold lost 10% in U.S. dollar, Swiss Franc, and Japanese Yen. Note, however, that Yen gold is trading very close to all-time highs, and some 30% below its highs in Swiss Franc. So the picture does not look very good in U.S. dollar, but that is about the only exception.

Bernie Sanders Is Right About Clinton and Big Banks—and Here Are the Numbers to Prove It (richcabot)

According to public disclosures, by giving just 12 speeches to Wall Street banks, private equity firms, and other financial corporations, Clinton made $2,935,000 from 2013 to 2015 ... Clinton’s most lucrative year was 2013, right after stepping down as secretary of state. That year, she made $2.3 million for three speeches to Goldman Sachs and individual speeches to Deutsche Bank, Morgan Stanley, Fidelity Investments, Apollo Management Holdings, UBS, Bank of America, and Golden Tree Asset Managers.

How to Profit on the Dollar’s Strength (Tiffany D.)

La Serena Golf is a new development on Uruguay’s Atlantic coast, near the town of La Paloma, in rural Rocha province. It’s a few dozen miles northeast of Punta del Este, the fabulous resort town where I first tasted brains. While Rocha isn’t a bustling year-round destination like nightclub-heavy “Punta,” its untouched Atlantic beaches and cool ocean breezes make it an attractive residential choice for the summer months, when Punta itself is packed with Argentine and Brazilian holidaymakers. Many of the plots have ocean views, and/or frontage on the fish-packed Laguna de Rocha.

Weapons Industry Revenue Forecaster Enthuses Over Global Turmoil (richcabot)

It is expected that a return to growth for defense subsector companies will likely occur, due to the increased interest by several involved nations as described above. In addition, many large, mainly US DoD defense programs representing billions of US dollars, are likely to start soon, enter the engineering manufacturing design phase, and reach low-rate or full-scale production over the next few years. These programs include Ohio Class Submarine replacement, F-35 fighter jet, KC-46A aerial refueling tanker, Long Range Strike Bomber, USAF T-X trainer, and Rafale fighter programs.

Automakers Go Electric, Even if Gas Is Cheap (jdargis)

The hybrid minivan is powered by a battery charge that can cover 30 miles of driving, at which point a gasoline engine kicks in to extend its range. The company estimates that the vehicle will achieve an equivalent of 80 m.p.g. in city driving.

One hybrid alone will not improve Fiat Chrysler’s corporate average fuel numbers enough to meet the coming standards. Last year, the company’s fleetwide average was about 22 miles per gallon — making it one of the least fuel-efficient companies in the industry.

Google Rolls Out New Service To Stimulate PV Solar (Tom K.)

Just as importantly, Google’s service is based on its own data which are just estimates of actual usage. For instance, using a five-story apartment building address in the calculator and looking at the total savings if the entire flat building roof were covered in solar panels, Google’s calculator projected present value savings of $4,000 for a twenty year panel life. That number is obviously far too low. The area in question – Hartford, CT – has very high electricity prices, and a five story building containing 70 apartments would likely save that much money in the two years if it were on solar power especially given there are no trees in the area and the roof is not shaded by any nearby taller buildings.

You Thought We Canadians Controlled Our Fisheries? Think Again (westcoastjan)

Take B.C.'s halibut fishery for instance, which is run in such a perverse way that most fishermen have seen their rewards so whittled down that it barely makes financial sense to leave the wharf. New fishermen are scarcer than blue whales, and the bulk of the benefits flow to "investors," big processing companies, even foreign corporations.

Gold & Silver

Click to read the PM Daily Market Commentary: 1/11/16

Provided daily by the Peak Prosperity Gold & Silver Group

Article suggestions for the Daily Digest can be sent to [email protected]. All suggestions are filtered by the Daily Digest team and preference is given to those that are in alignment with the message of the Crash Course and the "3 Es."

22 Comments

thc0655's picture
thc0655
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New Year off to a BANG in Chicago (err "Chiraq")

http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/local/breaking/ct-more-than-100-people-have-been-shot-in-chicago-so-far-this-year-20160111-story.html

Where are Obama's tears and Bloomberg's millions over this?  Chicago is a gun-controller's dream come true, considering practically nobody can own or carry a gun legally there. On the other hand, Chiraq is a gun-controller's nightmare because it illustrates that even when they get everything they want mass carnage ensues.

Seven people were shot to death and 30 more were wounded across Chicago over the weekend, raising the number of shootings in the city to more than 100 in just over a week into the new year, according to police.

The fatal shootings included two teens killed by a store clerk during a robbery in the Gresham neighborhood on the South Side, and one of three people shot at a party four blocks from Mayor Rahm Emanuel's home.

As of Monday morning, at least 19 people have been killed in gun violence in Chicago this year and at least 101 more have been wounded, according to data compiled by the Tribune.  This time last year, nine people had been killed and another 31 wounded, according to statistics kept by the Chicago Tribune.

The wider implications are limited, in my view.  These shootings are mostly enthusiastic members of the criminal underclass battling it out over drug turf and mindless, petty arguments (a significant percentage on social media).  Wake me up when the shootings involve more members of the working, law-abiding portion of the population, or when we start seeing political demands attached to organized, armed actions against government, business or low crime neighborhoods.

Besides, you have to subtract out the justifiable, self-defense shootings like this one (watch the video).

http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/local/breaking/ct-two-robbers-shot-to-death-20160109-story.html

The robbers were 15 and 17 years old.  What were you doing at 15 and 17? The 15 year old was arrested several days before this incident for stealing and crashing a BMW.  What? You thought he should've still been in jail?  They're both so steeped in the criminal underclass at 15 and 17 that they're stealing cars and sticking up liquor stores with illegal handguns because they know "the system" can't stop them or even make them regret their crimes.

 

 
sand_puppy's picture
sand_puppy
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Concentrating firearms in those with nothing to lose

Tom's article above on "The Chicago Paradox" (most highly restrictive gun laws associated with the highest gun violence in the nation) reminds me that poorly thought out gun policy can have the effect of concentrating gun possession in the hands of those with nothing to lose.

White and blue collar workers are licensed by the state to work.  They cannot afford to have a gun possession charge on their records for fear of losing their licenses and livelihoods.

But an uneducated, unemployed youth (UUY) leading a life of petty-crime has no such restriction. 

In addition, the inner-city gang life is one of the few RED Meme structures in the USA.  Power and social status are fought for and defended with violence and treats of violence.  You MUST be armed to survive in a RED Meme world.  The UUY will do whatever it takes to get a firearm, legally or illegally, "for protection."

So a gun policy that disarms the working class ensures that the RED Meme UUY petty criminal class have exclusive possession of all the weapons.

Helix's picture
Helix
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Re: "Historic First: North

Re: "Historic First: North Atlantic Empty of Cargo Ships In-Transit.  All Anchored Along Coasts; none moving."

This story was debunked within minutes of it appearing online.  Shame on you for reposting this crap without even the most rudimentary fact-checking.

cmartenson's picture
cmartenson
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You're right!
Helix wrote:

Re: "Historic First: North Atlantic Empty of Cargo Ships In-Transit.  All Anchored Along Coasts; none moving."

This story was debunked within minutes of it appearing online.  Shame on you for reposting this crap without even the most rudimentary fact-checking.

It was debunked within hours, including here yesterday:

http://www.peakprosperity.com/dailydigest/96252/daily-digest-111-10-thin...

 

mememonkey's picture
mememonkey
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Lighten Up
Helix wrote:

Re: "Historic First: North Atlantic Empty of Cargo Ships In-Transit.  All Anchored Along Coasts; none moving."

This story was debunked within minutes of it appearing online.  Shame on you for reposting this crap without even the most rudimentary fact-checking.

You have a pretty high bar for a daily digest of topical news feeds.   the iterative discussion process evaluating raw (news) inputs, like this erroneous misinterpretation  of shipping data sorted things out quickly enough 

It's not like CM led off an analysis with this article as the foundational basis.

Putting stuff in front of the smart folks here at PP for discussion and evaluation is why I value the site.

I for one often learn just as much  by the process of debunking as I do by ingesting factual data.

 

mememonkey

 

Helix's picture
Helix
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mememonkey wrote: Helix
mememonkey wrote:
Helix wrote:

Re: "Historic First: North Atlantic Empty of Cargo Ships In-Transit.  All Anchored Along Coasts; none moving."

This story was debunked within minutes of it appearing online.  Shame on you for reposting this crap without even the most rudimentary fact-checking.

You have a pretty high bar for a daily digest of topical news feeds.   the iterative discussion process evaluating raw (news) inputs, like this erroneous misinterpretation  of shipping data sorted things out quickly enough 

It's not like CM led off an analysis with this article as the foundational basis.

Putting stuff in front of the smart folks here at PP for discussion and evaluation is why I value the site.

I for one often learn just as much  by the process of debunking as I do by ingesting factual data.

mememonkey

Fact checking on a story line that's so improbable that it defies belief is a "pretty high bar"?  OK, whatever... 

sand_puppy's picture
sand_puppy
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Iran captures US Navy boats that entered its waters

http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2016-01-12/iran-seizes-2-us-navy-boats-cre...

When you want to start a fight you have to get the other side to throw the first punch.  Then "they started it" and you were "just defending yourself."  After all, a defensive war is "a just war".

So you push them, annoy them, insult them.  Maybe send a few boats across the territorial border.

So, when what you are really doing is coming from a "Game of Thrones," RED/BLUE Meme you have to be really clever to get them to punch first.   That is, unless you have Paul Wolfowitz on your side who can convince everyone that it is fair to punch first because you just know that they were going to punch you at some point in the future.  Then you can "strike first" AND be "defensive" at that same time.  This is the magic of having a really smart, but morally bankrupt, RED Meme lawyer on your team.

And it all happens on the day the POTUS gives his State of the Union address.

Of course, the press (and all the factions) that want a war "dare" him to "be strong" and promises to heap humiliation on thickly if he is "weak" and backs down.

Well what if not going to war is smart?  And better by far for the millions of human beings that will be effected.  And of course, Russia and China are heavily invested in Iran and will not sit out a war there.

Remember that Iran is the last of Wesley Clark's "7 nations" the Neocon / Likudnick wish to shatter.

 

 

 

Arthur Robey's picture
Arthur Robey
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Ferret.

 If Ferret sees a rabbit hole, Ferret will rush in joyfully. Ferret explores all the nooks and crannies.  If it is empty,  Ferret will go looking for another rabbit hole. Ferret hopes to catch a huge rabbit this way. 

Ferret knows of no other method of catching rabbits. Ferret is full of joy. Ferret has no ego. Ferret's brain is too small for both joy and ego.

Sandpuppy beat me to the punch.

blackeagle's picture
blackeagle
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What glasses are placed on your nose today?

A sociologist sees humans as a wonderful field of study

A company see lemons to squeeze (aka, human resources)

A banker see pigeons without feathers

A politician see sheep 

I see a DNA program gone wild. We are an extraordinarily complex set of algorithms. Some excellent, some good, some bad, some really bad and some unnamable. Unfortunately the source code is lost, so no way to fix and recompile the thing. Just live with "we" as best as we can and hope that we will not crash the host environment. 

And you see...

dboyes1's picture
dboyes1
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You thought Canadians controlled our fisheries...

I thought I owed it to Prosperity readers, since the article on global shipping had been 'debunked' today, to point out that the article on Canadian westcoast fisheries was pretty much just as erroneous. I think it was Mark Twain who said; "If you don't read the newspaper, you are uninformed. If you do read the newspapers, you are misinformed", and the above article in the Tyee is a great example of his aphorism. If anyone wants more details, I'd be quite willing to provide chapter and verse, but won't inflict more particulars on casual Peakers. By the way, this is the first time I've ever posted on here, as it's the first time a topic has come up with which I'm very familiar- almost 40 yrs fishing off BC. Long time reader and subscriber. Regards to all.

Mark Cochrane's picture
Mark Cochrane
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Welcome aboard...

Dboyes1,

Thanks for pointing out another source of misinformation. One of the great pluses of this site is the number of knowledgeable posters from so many backgrounds.  Can you provide at least a thumbnail explanation of how/where the story goes wrong? Fisheries are a major issue for the world in general but there is a dearth of firsthand information. I for one would be interested in your observations and insights.

Cheers,

Mark

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KennethPollinger
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KEY point: Exchange Stablization Fund (ESF)

Hunter's interview with Kirby is EXCELLENT.  I wondered where all the US treasuries being dumped by China, Russia, etc. were going and being processed. Does Kirby REALLY buy TONS of metals for clients?Anyone know for sure?

P.S. Jim tells me that to get gold out of PHYS one needs to have at least a 400 oz bar.  I hope I am not misquoting you, Jim, but wanted to share this as a few folks have inquired about it here at PP.com.

And thanks for responding to my inquires.  Ken

westcoastjan's picture
westcoastjan
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Posts: 575
interested in your chapter and verse

Hi dboyes,

As the person who sent the article into the daily digest I am interested, like Mark, in finding out your side of the story. Will you please take the time to tell us why the article is erroneous, and offer us some stats or other reference material to chew on?

I am asking because when you say you have almost 40 years of fishing experience here on the west coast, your comment gives me pause for thought as you may (or may not) have a vested interest, which would shape your viewpoint. For the record, I dearly hope you do have some info to debunk what the article is saying as I live on the west coast too. My concerns for our fisheries are great! I have a very healthy distrust of the DFO - trust that was eroded so much further under the previous conservative government. I have a very healthy distrust of Jim Pattison, the BC billionaire whose empire has controlling fingers in many diverse pies - more so that most people realize. We here in Canada are famous IMHO for taking the easy way out when it comes to our natural resources. Our track record is one of rape and pillage, shipping raw materials to far off lands where labour for value added products is cheaper. We have paid the price for it with few value added jobs at home, and decimated local economies when those exports have collapsed. It will be simply tragic if fisheries go (are going) the same way. It is beyond tragic. It is wrong, and yet another example of capitalism run amok, leaving crumbs for the middle and lower classes.

Thanks in advance for responding back. I am really interested in what you have to say and again, I hope that you can tell us that we have nothing to fear for our fisheries.

Jan

sand_puppy's picture
sand_puppy
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Not just an Iranian fishing trip, Eh?

Picture of the sailors captured by Iran just released.  This was a troop delivery vessel full of well armed soldiers.  I personally would not make anything of "humiliation" aspect as these events can be spun by anybody to any goal. 

But the pictures are of an armored troop delivery vessel filled with troops and battle gear:

http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2016-01-13/latest-humiliation-obama-iran-j...

 

dboyes1's picture
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BC halibut fishery

I'm pleased to offer a little more information on the BC halibut fishery (and groundfisheries in general), but where to start (and how deep to dive)? Well,......halibut fishing began in BC around the turn of the last century.

Dory fishing with jig gear and small, hand hauled longlines (called trawls, in those days, just to confuse modern readers who will see that term now applied to mobile, funnel shaped nets) was the main method for the first two or three decades. This gave way to bottom longlines deployed from the main vessel and the fleet, mostly Seattle and Vancouver based vessels, ranged farther northwestward as closer grounds were serially depleted.

More than thirty million pounds annually were taken from BC waters in the thirties as the previously unexploited (essentially) biomass was cropped off. Compare this to the average of around eight to nine million in the most recent three decades. This is perhaps comparable to the initial yield from a climax forest as compared to the ongoing harvest from a managed woodlot. The fleet kept moving to new grounds and in the end, they were fishing the Bering sea.

A bilateral halibut management treaty was signed between the US and Canada in 1923 (I think), with the aim of bringing rational management to the fishery, and the International Pacific Halibut Commission came into being, and it continues to manage the fishery to this day, out of its offices in Seattle (google IPHC, there is a vast collection of halibut data and information on their website). With the introduction of the 200 mile limit (so-called Extended Jurisdiction) in 1979, all the roaming around came to an end- Canadian boats were kicked out of American waters, US boats likewise out of BC, and the two jurisdictions settled down to manage their respective halibut resources using seven management areas in the US (from northern California to the Russian border) and one in Canada.

Halibut stocks waxed and waned, as populations of wild animals do, and the IPHC set TACs (total allowable catches) by area, each year using state of the art population models and an enormous research program to assess stocks- remember, this is a valuable fish. To this day, the IPHC is considered by many fish population scientists to be one of the leading organizations of its kind in the world. Fishermen with halibut licences (first issued in 1979 in BC anyway) fished in so called derby style openings in those days. The management authority would calculate that the TAC could be taken in so many days of fishing by the fleet that was licenced to fish in that area, and would declare an opening, usually running from noon to noon and divided into a spring, a summer and a fall opening of a few days each.

The race was on. Fishermen built bigger and more powerful vessels that could deploy more hooks and the openings shrank. Government managers froze the size (length) of vessels (for replacement purposes), so fishermen built them wider. The openings got shorter still, crews fished around the clock, the TAC was routinely exceeded and bycatch such as rockfish was tossed over dead to reserve hold space for the more valuable halibut. Sometimes, these derby openings coincided with poor weather, gales, storms, and the fishermen had to tough it out with the smaller vessels running for shelter and losing a big part of their annual income for the skipper and the crew.

Sometimes they coincided with a hurricane such as in 1986 (I think) and that opening a number of vessels, and fishermen were lost. Fishermen began to talk on the docks and in the coffee shops in the winter about the increasing craziness of the management system- the last year of the derby system, we fished for six days out of the year. Meanwhile, the fish buyers weren't any happier. Halibut used to be available to market for the greater part of the year.

Now, with the season down to a few days, here and there, they would have to deal with millions of pounds arriving in port on a single day- then nothing for months. They had to freeze most of the catch, but freezing capacity was limited- who could afford to build huge freezer plants that would only get used a few times a year? And halibut is traditionally marketed fresh- frozen got a lower price and as a consequence the price paid to the fishermen was very poor. So let's see, overfishing, loss of life, low returns from the resource, conservation concerns around bycatch- this was the Tragedy of the Commons on steroids. Some progressive fishermen began to talk seriously with the Department of Fisheries and Oceans (DFO, the feds) about restructuring the management system.

New Zealand and Iceland had gone to a catch shares system some years previously and the results looked promising, and so, after innumerable meetings the BC halibut fishery took the plunge in 1991 (the BC.Sablefish fishery had done the same in 1990). The halibut TAC stayed the same, and it was still caught by the same 435 licenced vessels, but in 1991, the season was over eight months long, and every vessel knew how much halibut they had to catch in that time frame.

The price to the fisherman doubled year over year, no one had to fish in storms, the crew got some sleep and double the pay per fish, bycatch could now be handled more sensibly, the TAC was never exceeded again, the amount of lost gear from turf wars and hence the amount of wasted fish went to almost nothing. Guess what also happened- well, the price of licences and catch shares began to climb- people wanted to buy into a safer, more profitable fishery. Four years after Canada went to catch shares in halibut, Alaska followed suit, tired of getting less than half the price per pound that their compatriots south of the border were getting, but not before their fishery got down to a 24 hr opening, in 1994, FOR THE YEAR.

In 2002, DFO convened a meeting of delegates from eight sectors of the BC groundfish industry (halibut, sablefish, rockfish outside of Vancouver Island, rockfish inside, lingcod, dogfish, trawl, and the processing sector. Originally, the meetings were to figure out ways to reduce rockfish bycatch, but over a couple of years, the fleets agreed to work on a system that would integrate all sectors of harvesters and all species. Four years of intensive, facilitated meetings, and what emerged was what came to be called Groundfish Integration. In a nutshell, every groundfish fisherman became accountable and responsible for all the mortality he caused, to all species of groundfish (with a couple of minor exceptions, such as spotted ratfish, but stay tuned) in the course of his fishing.

No longer would a fisherman be forced to discard species for which he had no ITQ- he could lease the poundage he needed, from another fisherman, and cover his bycatch. It became mandatory to retain all rockfish (which do not survive being brought to the surface quickly). 100% at sea monitoring either by a flesh and blood third party observer, or by an automatic camera system, where the whole trip is stored on secure computer hard drive and audited by a third party contractor after the trip was made mandatory. Logbooks became compulsory, and were audited against the observer's data, or against the viewed (shoreside) videos.

100% dockside monitoring became mandatory, and piece counts by species had to match up with the at sea data. If a fisherman exceeds his ITQ by species by area (some species are managed by a number of sub-areas), and fails to acquire ITQ to cover his overage, he is tied to the dock and cannot fish again until he does so. I won't go on any more- there are lots and lots more details and the management plan is half an inch thick, but here's a fact. This is about the tightest, best managed fishery anywhere. Since 2006, when Groundfish Integration was initiated, the fleet as a whole has never exceeded any of 53 different species/area combinations, and that's a fact too.

These days, only about 150 vessels fish halibut as their main fishery and another sixty or so retain halibut while directing on other species. So the fleet is about half what it was 25 yrs ago. Consolidation has occurred as fishermen have retired, and sold their catch shares to younger fishermen who wanted to build their businesses. This is a lot like what has happened in agriculture over the last 100 yrs- food business seeking economies of scale so as to remain competitive in an international market. Artisanal fisheries look quaint in National Geographic, but rowing out in a dory to jig a couple of fish is unrealistic today, particularly with modern food processing and handling requirements, chain of custody laws and so on.

About 20% of the ITQ and 25% of the halibut licences are communally owned by First Nations bands (aboriginal fishermen). A number of halibut licences are also owned individually by First Nations fishermen. These catch shares are fished in the same system with the same monitoring requirements as everyone else. There is a separate FSC (Food and Ceremonial) allocation for first Nations that comes off the top of the TAC. The commercial fishery is allocated 85% of the BC halibut TAC. the sports fishery is allocated 15%. The TAC is set each year at the Annual General Meeting of the IPHC- this year Jan24-28 in Juneau.

The proceedings are webcast and anyone can watch and participate- look on the IPHC website for details. The current stock assessment is also there for those of you who want to delve deep into Pacific halibut science. Canada sends three Commissioners (one government, one First Nations and one industry) to the IPHC and so does the US. The Commissioners vote, by area, on the TACs for the upcoming season. The BC halibut ITQs are owned for the most part by active and retired halibut fishermen at this point, and they must be attached to a licenced vessel. Some are buying more, some are selling out (mostly to First Nations for treaty settlement purposes) and some are in the process of intergenerational succession of one form or another. the processing companies own very little of the BC halibut ITQ- the biggest one owns less than 3%.

Halibut is an expensive, valuable fish. This year the average price was pushing $9Cdn. The lease price is similarly high $5-6.50Cdn, and the price to purchase ITQ from another fisherman is probably around $80/lb, if you can find some.

The fact is, this is a good business, that looks to have a bright future, that's very well managed- and people want to participate in it. lso, given the Groundfish Integration management system, some catch shares become valuable to some fishermen to cover their bycatch while directing on other species at certain times of the year- this is a complex system with a lot of moving parts and it's always in flux. BC halibut fishermen (and groundfishermen in general) sustainably harvest wholesome food from the coastal waters of BC, feeding Canadians and others while creating jobs and wealth from a renewable natural resource.

The BC halibut fishery was the first BC fishery to gain MSC (Marine Stewardship Council) certification (6 years ago?), the current gold standard for eco certification worldwide. Some dozen and a half international delegations have travelled to BC, many accompanied by EDF (Environmental Defence Foundation, the biggest ENGO in the US) to study the BC Groundfish Integation management system with an eye to adapting it to their fisheries.

The BC groundfisheries are co-managed between the DFO and fishermen and have been for decades. The health of the stocks are a testament to a system that works. Last season, commercial catch per unit effort in BC was the highest in the entire north Pacific, for the third year in a row and fishing is the best it's been in living memory. Something is going right.

Yoxa's picture
Yoxa
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That was a good read

Dboyes1, thanks for that background info. I'm not much of a fish eater but knowing that management of the halibut resource has improved so much would make me more likely to have halibut once in a while.

dboyes1's picture
dboyes1
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You're welcome. Reading it

You're welcome. Reading it over this morning, I saw some typos and one glaring error- EDF is the Environmental Defense Fund, not Foundation. I'd encourage interested readers to explore the fisheries side of their website for some perspective on modern fisheries management systems. For Canadian readers, the David Suzuki Foundation endorses BC Groundfish management. David Suzuki and his daughter Sarika came out on a halibut trip with us, which can be viewed on the Suzuki Diaries series (CBC). The chief fisheries researcher for DSF, Dr Scott Wallace, came on a halibut trip with me and made a short video which you can find on the DSF website by searching for 'Scott Wallace casts a line". 

Thanks to others on this site who take the time to inform the rest of us on subjects we're not connected to directly- typing the little piece on the BC halibut fishery took me quite awhile, and I appreciate the work many put in on a daily basis in their areas of expertise.

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Mark Cochrane
Status: Diamond Member (Offline)
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Posts: 1227
Now that was a mouthful --- and tasty

Dboyes1,

Thank you for taking the time to put together such a well informed, authoritative and educational post! It is great to hear of a success story where we normally hear of only poor management outcomes of fisheries stocks, whether they be cod in the North Atlantic or shrimp in SE Asia. If such a valuable fish as halibut can be well-managed then there is some hope that we won't strip mine the oceans unthinkingly beyond recovery. My limited but fond experience with halibut (but mostly cod) was with handlines with "Uncle Joe" in the early 1970s. It wasn't a dory but it was a small open boat that he fished with for a long time. We jigged for cod. He had one picture where he and a colleague brought in a halibut that they couldn't even get into the boat. It was strapped to the side and nearly sank the boat.  By the late 70s the place (Nova Scotia) was all but fished out after trawlers came through...

Cheers,

Mark

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dboyes1
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Posts: 8
Halibut and so on...

Mark. Thanks for your comments. I've read your pieces on climate change, and come away much the wiser. My expertise in fisheries matters is more modest, but still, a perspective from a lifetime of being there, and doing it, might add to the discussion and contribute to doing it better in the future. The boat I'm fishing at present I bought in Pubnico, so if you're connected to Nova Scotia, you'll know where that is. My grandfather was born in Grand-Pre. Although I'm not up on the fishery at all, I believe that the halibut are coming back in Atlantic Canada, after being fished down severely well over 100 years ago- and by hook and line gear initially. It really doesn't' matter what kind of gear is employed, overfishing is overfishing, although trawl gear can be very destructive if not properly regulated and monitored. By the way, the trawl sector here in BC has negotiated an agreement with the David Suzuki Foundation, outside of DFO, to limit bycatch of coral and sponges and to shrink and then freeze their footprint to a small fraction of the ground they used to fish. Progress is possible!

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westcoastjan
Status: Platinum Member (Online)
Joined: Jun 4 2012
Posts: 575
very nice reply however I have a few more questions

Hi again dboyes1. I really appreciated your well put together response. It provides food for thought (fish for thought?cheeky) and was interesting to read. You are obviously well vested and a great supporter/participant in our fisheries! Nothing like fresh halibut on the barbie eh!

I do wonder about some other info though. The reason I posted the Tyee article was that I felt one of the main authors, Evelyn Pinkerton, was credible  http://www.curra.ca/features_pinkerton.htm

Further searches found a number of articles including this one which seem to have different viewpoint from yours on the ITQ system http://www.ecologyandsociety.org/vol3/iss2/art2/

In the category 1 and 2 barriers this jumped out at me:

Canadian fisheries policies also have usually had the effect of transferring access rights away from small-scale commercial units to large-scale units with mass production strategies, linked to mass processing and markets (Marchak et al. 1987, Finlayson 1994, de Young et al. 1999, Walter et al. 1999).

There was also this article that had me questioning what was really happening out on our oceans:

http://ecotrust.ca/briefing/a-cautionary-tale-about-itq-fisheries/

I am not trying to argue with you - I see you as one of the good guys! But you weighed in with a lot of good info that I perceive as being your point of view without stats to back that point of view up - something that this site is well known for having as the standard for discussion points.

My concern here is not who is right or wrong but the bigger picture of how the fisheries really are being managed. I have grave concerns for our salmon fisheries - between "the blob", warming waters, diseases from fish farms, possible radioactive contamination from Japan and environmental degradation of watersheds in which salmon spawn, we should all be concerned! I lack confidence in the DFO because I lack confidence in government overall, to do right, to do right by its citizens, to do right by future generations. People like you as well as David Suzuki and Evelyn Pinkerton allay some of my concerns. But there are not enough of you.

Thanks again for your great response - it was very much appreciated!

Jan

 

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Mark Cochrane
Status: Diamond Member (Offline)
Joined: May 24 2011
Posts: 1227
Doctorate in life

Dboyes1,

Don't be too modest. Surviving in fishing for as long as you have doesn't come easy. I suspect that fishing is like farming in that 'dumb' farmers or fisherman are likely to find themselves quickly out of business. You covered a lot of ground in your post indicating how the business of your fishing, not just the need to catch the fish, has been a moving target. Between that, politics, regulations, technology, labor issues and just the vagaries of the sea you've dealt with a few challenges. Experience is a great teacher but it is what you do with it that really matters. Thanks for sharing your insights.

I was a kid when we were visiting Nova Scotia, we spent time around Peggy's Cove with my friend's uncle. My own family (grandmother's generation and before, back to the late 1700s) was up in Cape Breton, much around Creignish. The David Suzuki Foundation had me up to Toronto to speak at a conference a few years back, about forests, not fish though!

Cheers,

Mark

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dboyes1
Status: Member (Offline)
Joined: Jan 12 2010
Posts: 8
BC fisheries

Hi Jan. Thanks for your questions.  I'll try and answer each. I've known Evelyn Pinkerton for many years and we've had a few spirited discussions about the best way to structure fisheries. She favors an adjacent community management model that she has studied in Japan and elsewhere. That is not the system that has evolved here in BC since European colonization in the late 1800s- I guess you might call it  a free enterprise or a capitalist model that is the current situation in the BC fisheries, like pretty much every  other business sector in Canada. As in other resource  industries such as forestry, mining, and oil and gas, government issues licences, establishes rules and regulations, exacts a royalty, and expects that private individuals will get on with producing products, jobs and taxes and so contribute to the economy and society. Canada has chosen, too, to organize agriculture on a free enterprise model, and I would suggest that the examples we've seen of collectivized agriculture in the Soviet Union and China would argue against adopting that system here, but that's just my opinion. As to a preference for small fishing enterprises over large ones, well, some fishermen  have proven to be ambitious- they've started with small, old vessels, and over time built bigger newer ones and ventured farther out and for different species. Some have pioneered new fisheries and new markets over the years and this seems to be just a part of human nature. Economies of scale operate just the same in the fishing business as in other facets of the economy and a bigger enterprise is often able to be more competitive in the marketplace- not always though and not forever as we've often seen once dominant players become stagnant and go into decline as young upstarts shoulder them aside with better products and marketing. I've heard the arguments put forth by Ecotrust as well (as per your links) and would say once again that there are many different ways that society and fisheries might be structured and if enough fishermen want change, it will happen- look at the switch from derby fisheries to catch shares over the past two and a half decades.

I trolled for salmon with three different boats from 1977 until two years ago and so I'm familiar with and share many of your concerns. A warming climate will very likely change many things about fish and fisheries, but the effects will be very hard to predict. For some reason, the halibut distribution seems to be edging south at present- contrary to expectations. I was very active in the fight against fish farms back in the eighties, but got nowhere back then. The fishermen's associations I belong to continue the battle on various fronts, but with a notable lack of success. Alexandra Morton is a hero. So far, there is no evidence that radiation from Fukashima is a problem here in BC, and from what I've read, the areas of concern are quite localized around the plant itself. Deforestation and development of watersheds is the main driver for declines in salmon runs, and the real problem is overpopulation as I see it- our species has been far too successful as we teem in our billions all over the earth. And as for DFO- it's complicated. There are many very talented, dedicated and hardworking managers and scientists at all levels in that organization. There are also people just putting in time, much like everywhere else. The groundfish folks have done a very good job, in recent years, as I see it. But like any government bureaucracy DFO is a lumbering beast that gets prodded this way and that by the political forces of the day, and it's far from nimble. I've not yet met our new Minister of Fisheries, but people who have speak well of his enthusiasm and diligence to learn his portfolio. 

I'll leave you on a note of optimism- you should see all the whales up and down the coast! In the late seventies, when I first began to roam the BC coast, if you saw a whale (other than an Orca) it was worth a call to your buddies on the radio to brag, and almost always humpbacks. Now, humpbacks are everywhere and fin whales too, and sperm whales often follow us about. A couple of years back we saw three blues as well. Sometimes we have to slow the boat down to avoid collisions- I'm not kidding! Regards, Dave.

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