Governing Aquaculture for Human Security
Sara Hughes and Joan B. Rose
The purpose of this chapter is to evaluate the status of the aquaculture industry in order to identify new and promising governance pathways that can help ensure aquaculture develops to enhance human security. Human security is “a state that is achieved when and where individuals and communities have the options necessary to end, mitigate or adapt to threats to their human, environmental and social rights; have the capacity and freedom to exercise these options; and actively participate in pursuing these options” (Global Environmental Change and Human Security Project 1999). While security studies have traditionally focused on military conflicts at the state level, the boundaries of security have been redefined to encompass the influence of environmental and resource conditions on the security of individuals and communities (Mathews 1989; Westing 1989; United Nations Development Programme 1994). In this context, aquaculture development has the potential to enhance human security in many places around the world by increasing food production and livelihood opportunities, improving nutrition, and supporting fisheries management goals. Without the appropriate governance systems in place, however, aquaculture development has the potential to threaten human security through coastal and inland water pollution, ecosystem degradation, increased resource scarcity, and food contamination. Aquaculture governance must move forward to enhance and institutionalize the human security benefits of aquaculture while constraining its threats.