Canada-U.S. Transboundary Resources Steering Committee
The objective of the Canada-United States (U.S.) Transboundary Resources Steering Committee, or 'Steering Committee', is to ensure bi-annual discussion between Canada and the United States on transboundary integrated ecosystem management issues associated with the Gulf of Maine and Georges Bank marine environment. It strives to develop complementary and integrated approaches that can be implemented domestically, as required by both countries.
The Steering Committee is comprised of Canadian co-chair Doug Wentzell, Regional Director General Maritimes Region, and U.S. co-chair Michael Pentony, Greater Atlantic Regional Administrator of NOAA Fisheries. Additional delegation members serve as advisors at the invitation of the co-chairs.
|Canadian Delegation||U.S. Delegation|
|Industry co-chairs of Gulf of Maine Advisory Committee (GOMAC)||Chair of the New England Fishery Management Council (NEMFC)|
|Executive Director of the New England Fishery Management Council (NEFMC)|
|TRAC representative||TRAC representative|
|DFO Representatives on TMGC||NOAA Fisheries Management representative on TMGC|
|Industry co-chair of TMGC||Co-chair of TMGC|
|Co-chair of Oceans Working Group||Co-chair of Oceans Working Group|
|Co-chair of Habitat Working Group||Co-chair of Habitat Working Group|
|Co-chair of Species at Risk Working Group||Co-chair of Species at Risk Working Group|
|Integration Committee members||Integration Committee members|
|Integration Committee Project Manager||Northeast Fisheries Science Center Director|
|Special Advisors as required||Special Advisors as required|
History of the Bilateral Steering Committee
The Canada - United States (U.S.) Transboundary Resources Steering Committee was established in 1995 to promote a collaborative approach to fisheries resource management in the Gulf of Maine. This committee is representative of the firm commitment Canada and U.S. have each made to the principles that underscore ecosystem based management. The Steering Committee, and its associated working groups and committees will help each country move towards their respective domestic conservation and protection agendas while each pursues sustainable economic policies.
Recognition of the importance of bilateral cooperation in fisheries resource management in these waters was shaped by several important events. In 1984, the International Court of Justice delineated the maritime boundary that separates Canadian and U.S. waters in the Gulf of Maine. During the 1980s, increased cross-boundary fishing effort on Georges Bank prompted officials from both countries to consider complementary approaches to resource management and enforcement. The 1990 Canada-U.S. Fisheries Enforcement Agreement was signed as a result, and supports efforts to prosecute unauthorized fishing on both sides of the boundary. On-going discussions led to a series of regional bi-lateral discussions which eventually culminated in the creation of the Canada-U.S. Steering Committee in 1995.
Under the leadership of the SC, several initiatives have been undertaken. Scientific collaboration was formalized in 1998 with the creation of the Transboundary Resource Assessment Committee (TRAC). In 2000, the Transboundary Management Guidance Committee (TMGC) was established. It provides a mechanism whereby sustainable harvest strategies for groundfish stocks that straddle the maritime boundary can be developed. The TMGC process led to the 2003 resource sharing agreement for cod, haddock and yellowtail flounder on Georges Bank.
In the early-to-mid 2000s, the SC broadened its scope to include additional working groups related to integrated marine management. These groups were: Species at Risk (2003); Habitat (2004); and an ad-hoc Oceans Working Group (2005). In 2005, the Steering Committee instituted the Integration Committee (IC) to function as the operational arm of the Steering Committee. The IC's primary function is to integrate and support the working group processes in order to facilitate integrated Ecosystem-Based Management in the Gulf of Maine.
For further details on the Canada-U.S. transboundary approach, including the role of the Integration Committee, please refer to the Canada-U.S. Regional Transboundary Guidance document (September 19, 2005).
- Date modified: