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Thursday, 06 May 2010

EU vows to tackle overfishing with policy overhaul

European Union ministers on Wednesday vowed to overhaul their 840 million euro-a-year fishing subsidies policy by next year to avoid overfishing and make the industry more sustainable. In British waters alone, scientists estimate fish stocks have declined by 94% in the past 118 years and commercial fishing has profoundly changed seabed ecosystems, leading to a collapse in numbers of many species.
Environmental groups say the Common Fisheries Policy (CFP), due to be reformed from 2012, has depleted fish stocks by swelling Europe's fishing fleet, the world's third largest.
Greenpeace has called on the EU to cut its fleet and set aside 40% of EU waters as protected marine reserves."We need a turnaround in our policy," EU Maritime Affairs and Fisheries Commissioner Maria Damanaki told journalists after a meeting of the bloc's fisheries ministers in Vigo, the hub of Spain's fishing industry."We have great problems of overfishing and overcapacity all over Europe and we have to face these problems."

Source: Euractiv