Uta Bellion, Director of the EU Marine Programme of the Pew Environment Group, issued this statement in response to Commissioner Borg's proposal on Wednesday for a full review of the Common Fisheries Policy:
"The Pew Environment Group welcomes the Commission's timely and encouraging proposal for a full review of the Common Fisheries Policy. With 88% of assessed Community fish stocks considered overfished, with a number of stocks on the verge of collapse, and with a third of shark and ray species in Community waters threatened with extinction, this initiative may be just in time to enable the long-term sustainability of European fisheries. The Pew Environment Group will support the review process, and will work with EU member states to put environmental sustainability, and the long-term viability of fish stocks, at the heart of the CFP review."
In particular, the Pew EU Marine Programme is focussing on a number of issues which should be included in the review of the CFP:
1. Reducing overcapacity of the EU fishing fleet with special emphasis on reducing harmful and energy-intensive fishing vessels, gears and practices;
2. Decoupling environmentally harmful subsidies and redirecting them towards sustainability; and
3. Ensuring that catch limits follow scientific advice.
Note to the Editor:
On Wednesday 17th September the Commission endorsed a proposal by Commissioner Borg concerning a full review of the Common Fisheries Policy: Read Europa press release.