FFM #2: Reality-based fisheries policy with Bubba Cook

This is the second in the Future Fisheries Management series that we are producing in collaboration with the Mercatus Center at George Mason University and the Center for Governance and Markets at the University of Pittsburgh.

In this episode, Michael speaks with Bubba Cook, the Western and Central Pacific Tuna Programme Manager at the World Wildlife Fund, or WWF. Bubba’s career has included multiple phases. He obtained his law degree from Lewis and Clark Law School, working for the U.S. National Marine Fisheries Service in Alaska where he led a team in the implementation of of a catch share, also known as an individual transferable quota, program for the North Pacific crab fishery made famous by the TV show “Deadliest Catch.”

Bubba later joined WWf’s Arctic Programme to support fisheries conservation and management efforts across the Bering Sea from the Russian Far East to Alaska’s remote indigenous communities. In 2010, he joined the U.S. Peace Corps and servedin  Fiji, where he supported several grassroots marine conservation projects over two years. Since 2012, Bubba has worked as the Western and Central Pacific Tuna Programme Manager for WWF out of Suva, Fiji, and Wellington, New Zealand, where he focuses on improving tuna fisheries management at a national and regional level in the Western and Central Pacific Ocean through policy improvements, market tools, and technological innovation.

Michael and Bubba discuss the lessons that Bubba has learned at each step along the way, and Michael asks him about the recent WTO fishing subsidies agreement that were a central focus of the workshop where they met.