Oceana completes expedition
Oceana will use its findings to push for more marine protected areas. Photo: Oceana/Carlos Minguell
Oceana has completed its third annual Baltic Sea expedition, aiming to expose the weaknesses of the current network of marine protected areas.
The expedition, which focused solely on coastal areas for the first time, also aimed to document fisheries to ensure effective, scientifically based management for all commercially caught species.
Xavier Pastor, executive director, Oceana Europe, who led the expedition, said: “Though 12% of the Baltic Sea is currently protected, its marine protected areas are very poorly managed and also badly distributed.”
Oceana says it’s the same case for fisheries management, where a lack of supervision and “weak governance” allows illegal fishing to “run quite rampant in some areas”.
Oceana's crew travelled through seven Baltic countries, meeting with politicians, media and local fishermen. The team of divers and scientists carried out 50 scuba dives and an extra 20 dives with an underwater vehicle.
Over the coming months, Oceana will analyse all its findings to push for more marine protected areas and better fisheries management in the region.
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