Western Mediterranean: EU-wide fish conservation measures are needed
Today, MEPs are going to adopt an agreement found on a multi-annual plan for the Western Mediterranean and on more restrictive measures to protect swordfish. The text aims at ensuring sustainable exploitations by introducing first EU-wide management measures for demersal species in the Western Mediterranean Sea. The ALDE group stressed today that even if the final text could have been more ambitious, the agreement is still a good step forward towards improving the current regulatory framework, which had proven to be ineffective, and hope that it will be endorsed today.
Izaskun Bilbao Barandica, Shadow rapporteur on this file, said ahead of today’s vote:
"This is not my proposal, this is not my plan. But it represents a step forward in avoiding real risks for stocks and for the future of coastal communities. Until now, the rules that manage fisheries and stock work state-by-state and do not avoid overfishing. Over 80% of the stocks in the Western Mediterranean are at risk of collapse. This plan now provides an EU management plan with fishing effort reductions and improves the area and period to be protected from trawlers fisheries. The rules to manage the Western Mediterranean need a reform and today’s vote is the only way forward to progress an unavoidable change."