Fishing is one of the most significant drivers of declines in ocean wildlife populations and ocean ecosystems are collapsing worldwide, due to overfishing and damaging fishing techniques. Apart from those, pollution – and especially plastic pollution – is a main driver of fish extinction and to a large extent also tied to the fishing industry. Of all the plastic pollution on the seas, roughly one-fifth is directly due to the fishing industry. Plastic pollution is currently the biggest threat to the health of most if not all species living in the seas and to all those that indirectly depend on them for food.
Important conventions addressing pollution by the fishing industry are the International Convention for the Prevention of Pollution from Ships of 1973, as modified by a 1978 Protocol (MARPOL), and the 1954 International Convention for the Prevention of Pollution of the Sea by Oil. On plastic pollution, however, no rules or regulations exist as of yet: this is what should be produced by the committee.