An Taisce calls for reform of Common Fisheries Policy to include a Discard Minimisation Policy
Yesterday’s landing of ‘discards’ in Kilmore Quay highlights An Taisce’s concern about the common practice of discarding fish which are too small or fall outside European quotas.
Discards are mandatory under the current EU Common Fisheries Policy, which is intended to protect fish stocks by setting quotas and minimum sizes of fish. Some 38 per cent of commercial Irish whitefish catches currently have to be thrown overboard under EU rules.
An Taisce urges Simon Coveney, the Minister responsible, to ensure that the Common Fisheries Policy is reformed to ensure that priority is given to applying selective fishing practices in order to avoid unwanted catches in the first place.
Management plans need to be developed for all fish stocks, with effective monitoring and enforcement for these strategies to minimise unwanted catches and therefore minimise discards. Care must also be taken and strict conditions put in place to ensure that unwanted catches cannot be commercialised or yield financial gain to individual operators.
For further information, please call:
Charles Stanley-Smith, An Taisce Communications - Tel: 087 2411995