What does a New York City mayor do after leaving his position of 12 years? Well if you’re Michael Bloomberg, you spend your post-political career saving the environment. The former mayor recently announced his plans to spend $53 million to tackle a major global issue – restoring the world’s fish populations. Called the Vibrant Oceans Initiative, the Bloomberg Philanthropies plan calls for implementing fishery reforms in Brazil, Chile, and the Philippines to stabilize the number of fish available and keep people fed.
Bloomberg plans to work specifically with Oceana, Rare, and EKO Asset Management. Oceana is one of the world’s largest international ocean conservation organizations, and can offer experience in setting and enforcing reasonable catch-limits as well as reducing the amount of unintentionally caught and discarded sea life. Meanwhile, Rare will help train local fishers into conservation leaders around the world by creating management systems. These systems would enforce exclusive fishing rights for near-shore fishers and create protected areas where fish can reproduce undisturbed.
The Vibrant Oceans Initiative also plans to engage directly with fishermen in Brazil and the Philippines. To make it all happen, EKO Assets plans to design investment blueprints that can bring in private investors to financially reward local fishers and industrial fleets transitioning to sustainable fishing practices.
Overfishing is currently a big problem in the world and according to Bloomberg Philanthropies, only 13% of the world’s fisheries are safe from being over-harvested. Instead of implementing policies like a looming foreign authority, Bloomberg Philanthropies hopes it can bring investments and partnerships in to teach and entice local fishermen to promote proper management.
Beyond fixing the fishing world, former Mayor Bloomberg has begun spending his post-political career working with the United Nations and its global leaders towards a global climate deal. The UN signed the former mayor on as a special envoy for cities and climate change.