Fish are central to the livelihoods of floodplain communities throughout the Amazon River system. In the 1970s and 80s commercial pressure on fish stocks increased, leading to community fishing agreements and, in the 1990s, formalized co-management policies for regional fisheres. However, progress remains fragile as government neglect of the fisheries sector increases and management shifts to state governments.
Earth Innovation Institute is pursuing a multi-pronged approach to modernize small-scale and community-based fisheries in the Lower Amazon region of in the State of Pará, Brazil. Together with our local partners, we organize multi-stakeholder processes that promote modernization of Lower Amazon fisheries. We are now working with floodplain communities, fisher unions, the local university (UFOPA) and state government agencies to develop more effective management regulations that support sustainably managed fisheries. Our goal is to integrate community fisheries into sustainable supply chains for local and national markets, increasing fisher incomes, and improving the quality of life in floodplain communities while also conserving floodplain ecosystems and resources.