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Japan seeks to boost catch limits of prized bluefin tuna

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MITO, Japan (AP) — Japan has proposed raising its catch quotas for Pacific bluefin tuna, a fish so highly prized for sushi and sashimi that its population is at less than 5% of historical levels.

An online meeting of countries that manage the Pacific bluefin that began Tuesday is studying the proposal to raise Japan’s catch limits for both smaller and larger bluefin tuna by 20%.

A slight improvement in the spawning population for the fish has raised confidence that it can recover from decades of overfishing. But conservation experts say increasing catch limits too soon could undo progress toward restoring the species.


Increasing harvests of such fish could also drive prices lower, making the industry less profitable in the long run, the Pew Charitable Trusts said in a report issued Tuesday.

The report, Netting Billions 2020: A Global Tuna Valuation, put the market value of seven tuna species including bluefin at $40.8 billion in 2018. Despite increased catches, that was a decrease from $41.6 billion in 2012.

“Just because increasing catch is sustainable does not mean it is always the right thing to do,” said Grantly Galland, an officer in Pew’s international fisheries team.

Prices for most species of tuna have fallen due to oversupply of caught fish, he said.

The meeting of the Western and Central Pacific Fisheries Commission and the Inter-American Tropical Tuna Commission includes more than two dozen countries that collaborate to manage fisheries on the high seas and curb illegal and unauthorized fishing and other activities that endanger highly migratory species such as the Pacific bluefin.

The countries participating in management of the Pacific bluefin committed in 2017 to reducing their catches to help return the species to 20% of its historic size by 2034.

Japan plays a critical role in the survival of the

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Bluefin tuna in focus as Japan seeks boost to catch limits

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MITO, Japan (AP) — Countries involved in managing bluefin tuna fisheries are set to face-off over a Japanese proposal to raise its catch quotas for the fish, highly prized for sushi and sashimi.

At an online meeting that began Tuesday, Japan is seeking to raise its catch limits for both smaller and larger bluefin tuna by 20%.

A slight improvement in the spawning population for the fish has raised confidence that it can recover from decades of overfishing. But conservation experts worry that the capture of small fish used for farming bluefin tuna is may be putting the recovery of the species in peril.

The Western and Central Pacific Fisheries Commission includes more than two dozen countries that collaborate to manage fisheries on the high seas and curb illegal and unauthorized fishing and other activities that endanger highly migratory species such as the Pacific bluefin.

Countries participating in management of the Pacific bluefin committed in 2017 to reducing their catches to help return the species to 20% of its historic size by 2034.

Japan plays a critical role in the survival of the species not just because of its huge appetite for the fish. The Pacific bluefin spawns almost entirely in seas near Japan and Korea. Japanese fishermen also capture small tuna to be farmed to maturity, although the number of traditional artisanal fishermen has fallen in recent years as younger Japanese choose not to engage in such dangerous and difficult work.

The latest data show the spawning stock biomass of the Pacific bluefin, an indicator of the fish’s ability to reproduce at a sustainable level, rising to about 28,000 metric tons in 2018 from 10,837 metric tons in 2010.

That is still less than half the estimate for 1995 of a spawning stock biomass of 62,784 metric tons. It

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Back in Germany, Loris Karius seeks to rebuild career

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DÜSSELDORF, Germany (AP) — A return to the Bundesliga relegation fight was never part of the plan for Loris Karius.

More than two years after making some bad mistakes for Liverpool in the Champions League final, the German goalkeeper has returned to his homeland for the latest move in trying to rebuild his once-promising career.

Union Berlin may be far from the peak of European soccer, but it could offer the ideal place for Karius right now. The first step could come Friday when Union plays Mainz, Karius’ old club.

“I’m looking forward to my new opportunity in Berlin and I’m happy to be playing in the Bundesliga again,” Karius said Monday after his season-long loan from Liverpool was confirmed. “Union is a special club, one that has earned a great deal of respect, not just by promotion to the Bundesliga. I would like to play my part in this positive development and help to achieve the great goal of staying in the Bundesliga.”

When Karius left the Bundesliga in 2016, he was an up-and-coming goalkeeper with a dependable reputation. That came from helping Mainz establish itself in the Bundesliga and move away from the threat of relegation. A successful loan spell would help Union — the only current Bundesliga club which once played in the Cold War-era East German league — to do the same.

Karius spent two years in Liverpool trying to confirm himself as first-choice goalkeeper ahead of Simon Mignolet. That seemed to have paid off when he started the Champions League final in Kyiv, but the game changed everything.

Real Madrid captain Sergio Ramos caught Karius with an elbow and, while he at first seemed healthy enough to carry on, basic errors crept into his game. Trying to roll the ball out to a defender, Karius

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University of Michigan seeks restraining order to end graduate employee strike

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ANN ARBOR, MI – As the University of Michigan Graduate Employees’ Organization (GEO) voted to extend its strike for “a safe and just campus” for an additional five days, the university is seeking a temporary restraining order and preliminary injunction against the union strike.

UM is asking the Washtenaw County Circuit Court to order striking members of the GEO to return to work. The union represents about 2,000 graduate student instructors and graduate student staff assistants.

In the court filing, UM noted that, “Not only are GEO’s members interfering in the university’s mission to educate students by unlawfully withholding their labor, they are encouraging impressionable undergraduate students, over whom they exercise significant authority, to forego their education.”

The strike began Tuesday, Sept. 8, as graduate students marched and chanted at five different locations on UM’s campus. It has gained the support of undergraduate students; graduate student organizations from other colleges, such as Harvard and Western Michigan University; and even some construction workers on UM’s campus who picketed with them in solidarity.

UM has since submitted an offer to GEO, but that offer was rejected.

In a news release, Schlissel said UM can no longer allow the “profound disruption to the education we’ve promised our undergraduate students” in authorizing the temporary restraining order and preliminary injunction.

“We want our great classes to continue, our students to learn without interference and we don’t want anyone to feel threatened simply for wanting to go to class,” said Schlissel in a video to the campus community. “Going to the court was our only choice after learning the strike would continue. We’d much rather our classes be in session while we work out our differences.”

In the release, Schlissel said UM welcomes the opportunity to discuss the issues GEO has raised and noted the university’s