Tag Archives: European Commission

“Every crack was a stab in my heart,” – The Death of the Kaiki, Greece’s Traditional Fishing Boat

He sits sad-eyed on a bench in front of the Neos Pyrgos pier in North Evia, watching some of the few remaining kaikia go to and fro. Just a few years ago, his own kaiki was tied there next to them. Tzevelekos’ beloved boat was one of about 13,000 kaikia which have been deliberately destroyed since 1994, after a European Union directive called for the demolition of the small wooden fishing boats,, The directive aims at putting a stop to   overfishing,,, “Every crack was a stab in my heart,” said Dimitris Livanos of Agiopyrgos, also in North Evia, describing the boat demolition that he was forced to witness. The Traditional Boat Association of Greece is a private organization which is making concerted efforts to save traditional boats from extinction. “There are about 15,000 fishing boats left, based on the number of current licenses. We don’t know how many of these are traditional,” says Nikos Kavallieros, president of the Association. >click to read< 11:53

Deadline for Brexit Trade Talks Is Extended. Again.

Britain’s grinding negotiations with the European Union for a post-Brexit trade agreement won a reprieve on Sunday, as Prime Minister Boris Johnson and the president of the European Commission, Ursula von der Leyen, agreed to extend the talks despite divisions between the two sides that had looked impossible to bridge. In a joint statement issued after a midday phone call, Mr. Johnson and Ms. von der Leyen said, “We think it is responsible at this point to go the extra mile.” Mr. Johnson and Ms. von der Leyen did not set a new deadline for the negotiations, though as a practical matter, the two sides have only until Dec. 31,,, >click to read< 09:02

Will Brexit really bring victory for small scale fishermen or big business?

During the pre-referendum canvassing, Britain’s fishermen were held up by Leave advocates as an example of a ‘homegrown’ industry decimated by what they saw as ‘draconian’ EU regulations. Compliance with the EU’s Common Fisheries Policy, (that dictates that member states can’t control their own waters, nor set their own fishing quotas), was, they believed, the reason why. >click to read< 10:13

Brexit: Fishermen on high alert as EU trade talks loom

The UK is leaving the EU on Friday night after which both sides will get ready to talk about its future relationship with the aim to conclude these negotiations by the end of the year. Documents from the European Commission show that the EU’s negotiation position clearly aims for continuing with the status quo of reciprocal access to fishing waters and resources. Meanwhile the Irish Taoiseach Leo Varadkar is quoted as saying that access to UK waters must continue for EU fishing boats if the UK wants a trade deal on banking. >click to read< 11:19

With the right team, we CAN get a good fisheries deal

John Ashworth writes an important take on how the renegotiated Withdrawal Agreement and Political Declaration cover fisheries. John is a hero of the Eurosceptic cause, and a critical figure in the campaign to win back British waters. Indeed, I well remember my first meeting in Parliament working for Sir Richard Body, because it was when Save Britain’s Fish campaigners came to discuss whether or not he should take back the whip. So it is with considerable reluctance that I write this. On this occasion, I think he may be wrong. >click to read< 13:56

EU bans cod fishing in Baltic Sea

The EU announced Tuesday an immediate ban on fishing cod, the staple of Britain’s fish and chips, in most of the Baltic Sea in response to an impending stock collapse. Alerted by scientists, the European Commission, which oversees the management of fish stocks in European waters, warned of ‘a rapid decline’ in cod stock ‘if no action is taken’. ‘We must act urgently to rebuild the stock, both in the interests of fish stocks and fishermen,’ said European Fisheries Commissioner Karmenu Vella in a statement. >click to read<  18:30:

Brussels recommends legal action against Netherlands over pulse fishing permits

Civil servants in Brussels are recommending that legal action be taken against the Netherlands for breaking the rules on pulse fishing, campaign group Bloom said on Monday, quoting a letter from the European Commission. French marine lobby group Bloom made a complaint against the Dutch fishing industry last year. It claims 70 of the 84 Dutch pulse fishing permits were obtained illegally under the pretext of carrying out scientific research. >click to read<19:21

Scottish fishermen face cuts to mackerel quota

The International Council for the Exploration of the Sea (Ices), an influential group of scientists whose advice helps to shape fisheries policy in the EU and elsewhere, has called for north-east Atlantic mackeral catches to be slashed by nearly 70%. Mackeral was worth £162 million, or 29% of the total catch by value for the Scottish fleet last year. Scottish Pelagic Fishermen’s Association chief executive Ian Gatt said yesterday the proposed cut was a “huge concern” and he would be meeting European Commission officials today to discuss it. >click to read<08:04

Dutch trawlers may face pulse fishing ban as EU parliament says no

The European parliament on Tuesday voted in favour of a ban on pulse fishing, a decision which it will use in negotiations with the European Commission and which will have a major impact on the Dutch fishing industry, if implemented. Opponents of the system say it is a cruel and unnecessary method of fishing. It involves sending a current of electricity through sections of the sea bed, partially stunning sole and plaice and forcing some into the net. >click here to read< 16:49

EU Trawlers Step Up ‘Pulse’ Fishing Efforts, Devastating British Fisheries Ahead of Brexit

European Union trawlers have been stepping up illegal ‘pulse fishing’ in British waters under a special EU derogation, inflicting “total devastation” on the North Sea.  The controversial method of sees fishing vessels — mostly Dutch trawlers — drag electrodes across the seabed to zap sole and plaice off the floor. It is officially banned, but the European Commission — which controls the fisheries of EU member-states through the Common Fisheries Policy (CFP) — granted a special derogation for it to be carried out on an “experimental” basis in British fishing grounds in the North Sea. >Video, click here to read< 12:45

EU live lobster ban could cut off $125M Mass. market

lobsterDM0811_468x521Hoping to preserve a $125 million Bay State export market, the Massachusetts Congressional delegation has raised objections with the European Commission, arguing against a ban on live imports of American lobster. In a letter dated Wednesday and signed at the top by U.S. Sen. Ed Markey and Congressman Seth Moulton, the all-Democrat delegation made an economic and scientific pitch for why the trade should continue. The delegation wrote to Daniel Calleja Crespo, directorate-general for environment of the European Commission. “It is our hope that the EU’s Scientific Committee will uphold a commitment to making a data-based decision as they consider the potential listing of American lobster as an invasive species,” the letter says. Read the story here 10:20

Brexit – Entering uncharted territory,turbulent waters, with challenges and perhaps also opportunities.

Two things can be said with certainty: 1. At this stage there are more questions than answers 2. In this new world, fishermen will need a strong, cohesive, national organisation to defend their interests during the upcoming transition It is not difficult to understand the strong anti-EU sentiments within the UK fishing industry. The European Commission has too often behaved with arrogance, and the EU Parliament with ignorance, to escape their share of the blame. To understand this, you need to go no further that the Commission’s proposed EU ban on small-scale drift nets – to solve an enforcement problem in Italy but which if adopted would have extinguished many sustainable, viable small-scale fisheries in the UK. This is but one example which just illustrates the roots of the frustration that has built over many years. Read the rest here 14:41

Fears Ramsgate’s fishing fleet could be no more in 2016

11381335-large ramsgate fishermanA Ramsgate fisherman fears the town’s  next year if new fishing restrictions on Sea Bass come into force. The European Commission is considering a complete fishing ban on sea bass for commercial vessels and recreational anglers in the first half of 2016. Ramsgate fisherman Steve Barratt believes this ban would be the death knell of Ramsgate’s fishing fleet. Mr Barratt, has earned a living as a fisherman in Ramsgate for 30 years, said: “It’s getting to the point where you wake up in the morning and you think what’s the point anymore? I’m looking at the sea and there’s more bass there than there was 25 years ago.” Read the rest here 14:33

Fishermen Knowledge in Policy and Science: It’s just a net waste to ignore fishermen

yGrown-up policy-making requires significant input from those closest to the issue at hand. Sounds obvious, doesn’t it?. But you would be surprised at how often key stakeholders, to use the bureaucrats’ beloved terminology, are kept out of the loop, especially by the European Commission (and NOAA) . When it comes to my own industry, the politicians, officials and green lobbyists who have largely dictated fisheries policy over the past decade still view us (I’m borrowing this metaphor from our farming friends) as the fox in the hen house, that is, untrustworthy. Read the rest here 13:40

 

MSY Threat to Small-Scale Fisheries

 A rational, balanced and proportionate fisheries management approach would aim to continue this steady climb towards high-yield fisheries, without bankrupting the fleets.,, political courage – to face down those in the green lobby and their friends in the media, apparently oblivious to the human costs of the policies they have largely been responsible for. Read the rest here 08:43

European Commission proposes fishing opportunities in the Atlantic and North Sea for 2015

The European Commission has today proposed fishing opportunities for 2015 for the Atlantic and the North Sea. This is the annual proposal for the amount of fish which can be caught by EU fishermen from the main commercial fish stocks next year and it is for the first time based on the new Common Fisheries Policy (CFP). Read the rest here 11:31

EU fisheries policy ‘a failure’, concludes UK review

The EU’s Common Fisheries Policy failed to achieve its central objectives, the government’s review of the balance of power between the UK and the EU has concluded.  Those submitting evidence to the review “overwhelmingly” felt it had not successfully maintained fish stocks, the government said. Read more here 17:40