EU fisheries ministers fail to end overfishing

Press release - December 17, 2014
Brussels – Commenting on the outcome of the fisheries Council today, Greenpeace EU fisheries policy director Saskia Richartz said: “It is unacceptable that many of the fishing quotas agreed today fail to end overfishing. Ministers gave no justification for postponing action to recover fish stocks, despite new laws requiring that any delay is justified with appropriate evidence.”

Only last year, ministers committed to put an end to overfishing by the end of 2014 under the newly reformed Common Fisheries Policy (CFP), but today they failed to respect the new rules. While some fishing quotas were reduced in line with scientific advice (herring and horse mackerel), ministers have maintained existing fishing quotas or accepted weaker cuts than scientists recommended for crucial stocks, including cod in most areas and sole in the Eastern Channel and Irish Sea.

Saskia Richartz added: “Ministers are mistaken if they think they can enforce new European fisheries laws from behind their desks. Many of Europe’s industrial fishing vessels have an appalling track record and must be monitored closely. Many catch far more fish than they can sell, killing and discarding unwanted catches at sea. Our governments must change course and come out in favour of low-impact fishing, and stop supporting destructive monster boats.”


Saskia Richartz, Greenpeace EU fisheries policy director: +32 (0)495 290028, 
Luisa Colasimone, Greenpeace EU communication manager: +32 (0)476 988584, 

For breaking news and comment on EU affairs:

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.