Focus on Baltic fisheries this week

01 May 2013
Baltic Sea fish stocks are being discussed this week. Credit: Nikater

Baltic Sea fish stocks are being discussed this week. Credit: Nikater

The future of Baltic Sea fish stocks will be discussed at two meetings being held this week in Tallin, Estonia.

During the Baltfish and HELCOM meetings representatives and stakeholders from the region will discuss the implementation of a discard ban, multi-species management and review the Baltic Sea Action Plan (BSAP). The BSAP is an ambitious plan agreed upon in 2007 with the aim of restoring the badly depleted status of the Baltic Sea, but Oceana says that since signing the plan many of the agreed deadlines have been ignored and postponed.

This week’s review of the plan will be part of the declaration text for the upcoming Ministerial Meeting in October 2013. Oceana is calling on environmental ministers to ensure that the fisheries goals of the BSAP are retained and a plan to implement them is put into place without further delay.

The organisation has also said that improving the selectivity of fishing gears and changing fishing behaviour is key to minimising unwanted catches, instead of just dumping fish.

Oceana is also calling for the EU Commission and Baltic Member States to prioritise ecosystem health and long-term economic profitability over maximising catch volume.

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