Thursday, 3 September 2015

Nothing has been learnt

The news that the EU has decided to cut Baltic catch limits for 2016 is, perhaps, of marginal interest to UK fishermen though some of them might fish in the Baltic, but we were intrigued by the following comment:

The EU introduced a reformed Common Fisheries Policy in January 2014 to end decades of overfishing and help dwindling stocks recover.

Under the new policy, the Commission aims to set catch limits at levels that ensure fish stocks never drop below the minimum level at which they can be fished without having an impact on the long-term stability of the population.

Let us have a look at the points made there. So the CFP had to be reformed in order "to end decades of overfishing and help dwindling stocks recover". Exactly, how long have we had this policy in place? Some decades and yet under its benign control there has been serious overfishing and stocks are dwindling.

During those decades we have had numerous "reforms" though this one has been touted as the biggest since .... oh ..... the last biggest. It seems that overfishing has continued and the stocks went on dwindling.

It seems that, despite that, nothing is being learnt. The Commission, we are told, "aims to set catch limits at levels that ensure fish stocks etc. etc.". Is that not what the Commission has been doing for all those decades during which there was overfishing and the stocks kept dwindling?

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