The European Union acknowledged that existing policy has failed to stop declining European stocks, which have plummeted to about 10 percent of their post-WWII levels.
The European Union has unveiled plans to overhaul its fisheries policy in a reform hailed as the most radical in four decades.
The EU has had a Common Fisheries Policy for 28 years, but according to Ms. Damanaki this policy has failed to stop the decline of stocks. According to EU-sponsored research, 75 percent of European fish stocks are overfished.
In the Mediterranean, 82 percent of stocks are overfished. In fact, 3 out of 4 white fish species there are on the brink of extinction. Recent academic studies suggest that Europe’s fish stocks have plummeted to about 10 percent of their post WWII levels.
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A key point of the new plans is a ban on "discarding." Under existing rules, fishing fleets are awarded annual catch quotas, so vessels dump any by-catch – nonquota species or immature fish – to avoid being penalized by fisheries inspectors for exceeding their limits.