Efforts to end overfishing in the EU continue, on the sidelines of an EU Fisheries Ministers gathering in Brussels to set fishing levels for the North East Atlantic for 2020, an action supported by more than half a million signatures from EU citizens.
NOAA launched its 2019 ‘Improving International Fisheries Management’ report highlighting the nations who haven’t made much effort to tackle illegal, unreported and unregulated (IUU) fishing activities; Mexico, Ecuador and the Republic of Korea were identified for reported IUU activities.
In spite of a clear decline in certain fish populations, many fisheries subsidies still promote illegal fishing, overfishing and overcapacity, according to UNCTAD, adding that their removal is a priority. According to the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), 33% of the world’s fish resources are overfished, while around 60% are fished at maximum biologically sustainable levels.
EU and Canada entered into an agreement aiming to tackle illegal, unreported and unregulated (IUU) fisheries, marine pollution and climate change. The agreement will enable the easy implementation of the 3030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, mostly focusing on Goal 14, while also will facilitate the sustainable development of marine and maritime sectors.
The European Union published an infographic, providing information of the Illegal, Unreported and Undocumented (IUU) fishing, which still is on the rise in many countries. Specifically, fishing can be though of as illegal when there’s no authorization, when it is against conservation and management measures by RFMOs and when it is against national laws and international regulations.
Tidal energy specialist Sustainable Marine Energy Ltd, the Scottish University of Dundee, the marine equipment supplier Gael Force Group; and the Scottish Aquaculture Innovation Centre (SAIC) are exploring the development of a ‘groutless’ anchoring technology for the aquaculture industry.
The European Commission has adopted a Communication, taking into consideration the implementation of the EU’s Common Fisheries Policy. It also launched a consultation on the fishing opportunities for 2020. With this Communication, the European Commission wants to reaffirm its commitment to promote fisheries that are both environmentally sustainable and economically viable.
During the International Day Against IUU fishing, June 5, five organizations launched a report outlining the minimum transparency and anti-IUU fishing measures deemed vital for Regional Fisheries Management Organizations (RFMOs). The recommendations span from the point of harvest, through the landing, transportation and trade of fish products, including traceability systems along the value chain.
Responding to scientific advice that several important Baltic fish populations cannot be fished sustainably, four non-governmental organisations have demanded a halt to fishing for overfishing in the Baltic. Coalition Clean Baltic, Oceana, Our Fish and WWF urged the European Commission to not exceed the scientific advice provided by the International Council for the Exploration of the Sea (ICES) when setting all fishing limits in the Baltic Sea.
Marks & Spencer and Waitrose & Partners have signed the Environmental Justice Foundation’s Charter for Transparency. They now join the Co-op, Sainsbury’s and Tesco in making a pledge to make sure their seafood supply chains are free from illegal fishing and human rights abuse. According to EJF, this is a significant step forward, as together these five companies represent the vast majority of grocery sales in the UK.
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