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19th December 2018 | Press Releases

Minister Creed is being misleading by claiming the new fish quotas are based on scientific advice, says the Green Party

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Leader of the Green Party Eamon Ryan is calling on Minister Creed to stop the overfishing which threatens coastal communities and to stop the heavy spin too.

Deputy Ryan said:

“Minister Creed got on national radio this morning and repeated a number of times that the fish quotas, just secured, are based on scientific advice. Yes they are based on scientific advice and the advice is that they are totally unsustainable.

“The fact is that the new quotas allow fishing above the Maximum Sustainable Yield to continue. This is overfishing and it is short-sighted and destructive. It drives down fish numbers year after year until they collapse.

“To continue fishing like this is risking the future of fishermen and coastal communities all around Ireland. What we need to do is find solutions that will sustain fishing families in the long term. The only way to do that is to respect the scientific advice on what is sustainable.

“We need to look at designating much more of our territorial waters to Marine Protected Areas where no fishing can take place. This will help fish numbers recover more effectively. We are proposing to designate 50 per cent of our waters to Marine Protected Areas.

“There is a strong economic argument for reaching sustainable fishing rates. Research published last year shows how rebuilding Ireland’s fish numbers and then fishing them sustainably would generate an additional €270 million and could support some 2,200 new jobs.”

Commenting on the new quotas, Fintan Kelly of BirdWatch Ireland said:

“This result is a massive blow to the EU’s chances of ending overfishing by 2020. It appears that short-term political interest have again been prioritised over the benefits of more sustainable and profitable fisheries. Overfishing is driving marine life to the brink contributing to a 70 percent drop in global seabird populations over the last 50 years. We need urgent action and for our government to implement the law. Instead there has been no progress just a year out from the final deadline.”