Banking on Sustainable Fisheries
Oleg Martens, Ragnar Arnason, Kieran Kelleher, and Rolf Willmann
It is striking that natural capital constitutes a quarter of total wealth in low-income countries, greater than the share of produced capital. This suggests that better management of ecosystems and natural resources will be key to sustaining development while these countries build their infrastructure and human and institutional capital (World Bank 2005).
Natural resources or natural capital are economic goods that are not produced; however, they form the basis for goods and services provided by our economic systems. If properly managed, natural resources are capable of yielding substantial net economic benefits. In many countries, natural capital constitutes a significant part of the overall capital base (World Bank 2005).
Natural capital can be divided into two components, nonrenewable natural resources, such as hydrocarbons and minerals, and renewable, natural resources, such as agricultural land, forests, and fisheries. Renewable natural resources, unlike exhaustible natural resources, are capable of providing a sustainable flow of net economic benefits into the indefinite future. Marine fish stocks constitute a segment of the world’s stock of renewable natural capital (World Bank 2005).