Brussels, 20 December 2012 - Greenpeace is critical of last night’s deal on fish quotas for 2013, as it allows more fish to be caught than is sustainable. However, ministers for the first time have shown a level of discipline that has not been evident in the horse-trading over previous quota negotiations.
19 December 2012
German Minister Ilse Agner and secretary of state Robert Kloos meeting Greenpeace & Fisheries representatives.
“On Tuesday, the European Parliament showed its determination to end decades of unsustainable fishing by the EU’s oversized fishing fleets. This morning’s deal on quotas for 2013 shows that the Council of fisheries ministers has also finally understood that steps towards sustainable fisheries will require a level of discipline in setting fishing quotas. But their measures remain too timid, with many quotas still set above the recommended levels” said Saskia Richartz, Greenpeace EU fisheries policy director. “Science must form the basis of decision making on quotas by the Council, as it now will for the Parliament. Short-term vision and the industrial fisheries lobby must not dictate a result that will endanger the long-term health of our seas.”
This year, scientists have expressed particular concerns about overfishing of fish stocks around Ireland, including the Irish Sea, North West of Scotland and in the wider Atlantic waters West of Ireland. For instance, they have warned that there should be no fishing at all for herring West of Scotland and Ireland, no fishing for sole in the Irish Sea and 50% cut for most haddock stocks in the waters of the North East Atlantic.
On Tuesday Greenpeace was outside the Council to demonstrate with artisanal fishermen from across Europe to challenge ministers to back low-impact fishing and put science and sustainability at the heart of the decision making.
Greenpeace have also released a new animation calling on ministers to tackle fleet overcapacity - one of main drivers of overfishing - and setting realistic catch limits to preserve the health of our oceans.
Saskia Richartz: +32 (0)2 2741902,
Greenpeace EU pressdesk: +32 (0)2 2741911,
For breaking news and comment on EU affairs: www.twitter.com/GreenpeaceEU
Greenpeace is an independent global campaigning organisation that acts to change attitudes and behaviour, to protect and conserve the environment and to promote peace. Greenpeace does not accept donations from governments, the EU, businesses or political parties.