Wrapping up the Mediterranean

Feature story - 1 September, 2006
It's a bluefin tuna graveyard, white crosses float next to tuna ranch cages. We end our three month Mediterranean tour back where we started, in Spain, highlighting the desperate state of bluefin tuna stocks.

Greenpeace activists from the Rainbow Warrior create a syymbolic "tuna graveyard" with mock crosses inside a tuna ranch in Cartagena, Southeast Spain.

During the tour that started with the launch of the Greenpeace tunareport onboard the Esperanza in Barcelona, we've confirmed our worstfears about the threats facing the Mediterranean Sea. Bluefin tuna are being plundered, illegal driftnets known as "wallsof death" continue to be used despite their prohibition and the rampantoverdevelopment of the Mediterranean coastline is destroying coastalecosytems.

However, as we showed with the proposal for a network of marine reserves for the Mediterranean, there is still hope.

As theRainbow Warrior concludes the 2006 tour of the Mediterranean, we lookback on some of the highlights and many suprises from the past threemonths. From diving and documenting the beauty below the surface,confiscating illegal driftnets and rescuing sailors from sinking boatsto being blockaded by the fishermen in Marseille, it's certainly been amemorable tour.


"The Mediterranean is in desperate need of a sea change -literally. The large industrial fishing fleets are out of control, thetuna ranches are out of control, the illegal driftnetters are out ofcontrol, even the jellyfish are out of control, partly due to its mainpredators like tuna and sea turtles being wiped out," said KarliThomas, of Greenpeace International. "A network of marine reserveswould guarantee the protection of the Mediterranean species and theirhabitat and definitely help to reverse the fishery's decline."

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