October 10, 2019

Fundación Chile launches a program that promotes sustainable artisanal fishing

The “Sustainable Coves” or "Caletas Sustentables" initiative, seeks to promote projects with social identity and regional impact, enhancing the sustainable extraction of fish, mollusks and algae, by financing and implementing projects in innovation, infrastructure, and equipment, among others.

In order to identify projects that generate high social and environmental value for the small-scale fishing sector, Fundación Chile is developing the Program “Caletas Sustentables”. This nationwide initiative aims to safeguard the oceans’ environmental sustainability along with the local economic development of the fishing communities throughout Chile.

“With this Program we seek to accelerate the path towards sustainable activities in coves so they can contribute with healthy ocean ecosystems and provide a greater social and economic security to the coastal communities”, explains Sebastián Acevedo, VP of Finance and Business at Fundación Chile.

The executive points out that the initiative also seeks to “strengthen the sustainability of the Chilean coves’ productive chain and to contribute with local and regional productive growth, supporting the activity chain value, and decreasing the pressure that results from the extraction of marine resources”.

The Program is currently in an exploration phase, identifying projects focused on recovering the fishing population, improving the efficiency and quality of the supply chain, or projects with a high impact on the community or the environment. Throughout October, the initiatives with the greatest potential of replication or scalability will be selected, receiving financial support so they can be implemented.

The beneficiaries may consist in organized local groups, cooperatives, or other associations whose project is already in development and counts with technical and/or financial support from NGOs, development programs, CSR programs or similar. Other selection criteria to be considered are: legal constitution, female leadership, permanent activity throughout the year, and territorial connectivity to enable and provide for follow-ups. The selection process will also consider the coves’ categorization according to Subpesca, which classifies them according to their development and risk levels, based on operational, environmental, and organizational factors as well as infrastructure and associated services.

It is expected for the selected beneficiaries of the “Caletas Sustentables” Program to invest in technical-productive capacities such as infrastructure, equipment, management, safety/environmental conservation, training and education; and that they encourage environmental initiatives such as the repopulation of marine resources, productive diversification, and waste reduction, among others.

This program seeks to generate a collaborative model among all actors: public and private spheres, financial institutions, civil society, academia, training institutions, and others, promoting in Chile fisheries that are environmentally friendly and economically sustainable, and that support coastal communities and their quality of life.