Javin Pombra ‘22 Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific

Javin Pombra ‘22
Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific

Javin Pombra

The basics? I’m a rising second-year originally from California, and I’m planning to study some combination of Statistics and Government. Outside of WorldMUN, I also direct committees for HNMUN and HMUN Dubai (wow he’s worldly), am the Academic-Political Chair for the South Asian Association, and am part of an environmental consulting club. I’m an avid consumer of caffeine, am clinically addicted to escape rooms, and enjoy reading/writing plays. I’m a math guy so I’m fascinated by the role statistics and numerics have to play in policymaking. I think data-science can provide a useful tool for both national and international policy. 
Why WorldMUN? I want to direct WorldMUN to hear how different people approach a problem I care about. Specifically, how does your cultural context and upbringing inform your thought process, even when you’re representing another country? I want to hear debate about the solutions that I have considered, but I’m more excited to hear all the ideas that I’ve never thought of as well!
Favorite Movies/TV Shows: Moonlight, Aladdin, Inception/Parks and Recreation, VEEP, Game of Thrones, Elite (the Spanish soap opera)

Topic: Mitigating the South & East Asian Fishing Crises 

The United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (UNESCAP) will focus on the imminent dangers that have resulted from adverse fishing practices in South and East Asia. The region that this committee is tasked with discussing is the global center for maritime industry. Nourishment, economic wellbeing, and culture in countries ranging from China to Thailand are based off the health of aquatic ecosystems. Given the accessibility and nutrition provided by seafood, waters surrounding Asian countries are the key to the livelihood of those poorest across the world, not to mention the fact that the industry has a value of hundreds of billions.

Unfortunately, the threat of overfishing poses to cause major threats not only in the regions discussed in this committee, but internationally as well. Over half of fisheries in Southeast Asia are at risk and specific countries like the Philippines are at risk. Beyond overfishing, practices such as poison fishing and blast fishing both cause irreversible damage to marine environments. Even practices beyond fishing, such as the destruction of coral reefs has played a huge part in the crisis. International action must be taken as it is exactly that weak, unintegrated regulation of water bodies in the region that has resulted in innumerable destruction.

Beyond the imminent ecological damages, is another worrisome consequence of fishing: human trafficking. Titled “seafood slavery” and mainly prevalent in Thailand, reports show gruesome and horrifying practices involving migrant workers for the sole purpose of catching fish. Due to the ecological consequences often taken centerfold, the general public and international community often allow multinational corporations and even governments to allow these practices to continue. This, too, must and will be a counterpoint for discussion in committee.