Enough Evidence – Now It’s Time for Action
Greenpeace took direct action on the high seas to highlight the deep sea devastation caused by bottom-trawling fishing boats, in the face of continued moves by the EU to block a UN high seas moratorium.
A lone Greenpeace activist hurled himself onto the huge fishing net that was being hauled from the depths onto the deck of the EU bottom trawler. Activists in Greenpeace inflatables also attached a banner reading "Deep Sea Destroyer" to the stern of the ship.
The Spanish flagged "Playa de Menduiña" had been repeatedly asked to stop trawling, but refused. Bottom-trawling boats, the majority from EU countries, drag fishing gear weighing several tons across the seabed, destroying everything in their path and devastating marine life and underwater mountains, known as seamounts.
Maria Jose Caballero, Greenpeace campaigner onboard the Esperanza, said "We took action today against the massive destruction caused by deep sea bottom trawling because the EU has failed to."
"It's entirely wrong to just sit back while probably thousands of unknown species are being wiped out by this fishing practice. As long as naïve and lazy politicians either ignore the problem or actively collude to see it continue, we will be morally obliged to continue to take these actions."
The Esperanza is currently investigating and documenting bottom trawling in the North Atlantic. Seamounts in this area run from the south of Iceland to the Azores and form the world's largest mountain range.
Greenpeace is a member of the Deep Sea Conservation Coalition, an international alliance of organizations, representing millions of people in countries around the world, which is calling for a United Nations moratorium on high seas bottom trawling.