One week to catch tuna quota

| June 11, 2010

The EU’s industrial purse seine fleets have caught their whole annual quota of bluefin tuna in the Mediterranean in one week.

France’s purse seiners, for example, had already caught 1,456 tonnes by June 8th – some 86 per cent of their quota for the year – while Spain’s had caught 728 tonnes, over 90 per cent of their quota.

Purse seiners are so efficient they are kept idle in port for more than 50 weeks a year !

This total absurdity points to the gross overcapacity of fleets which is incompatible with a fish stock that is heavily depleted and in urgent need of recovery. The only reason the boat owners can afford to go out on the water at all is that, in common with several other fisheries, they were largely built and are ongoing supported, thanks to extensive EU subsidies.

High-tech purse seine fishing boats – whose vast sack-like nets encircle shoals of bluefin tunas as they gather to spawn – these kind of commercial fisheries are entirely unsustainable as they minimise any opportunity for stocks to regenerate.

Category: EU Government News, Government

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