New EU Fisheries Fund to Help End Overfishing

Written by on April 24, 2014 in Fish, Policy & Ocean Law
Irish fishing vessels.

Irish fishing vessels. Photo credit: infomatique via photopin cc.

Last week, the European Parliament concluded the reform of the EU Common Fisheries Policy (CFP) with the adoption of the final piece of legislation, the European Maritime and Fisheries Fund (EMFF). The reform has taken more than five years, beginning in 2009:

  • April 2009 – The reform of the CFP was launched on Earth Day in 2009.
  • May 2013 – European legislators agreed to a reformed CFP, including a commitment to recover and maintain fish stocks at safe levels, and to end overfishing in the EU “by 2015 where possible and by 2020 at the latest.”
  • December 2013 – The European Parliament adopted the basic fisheries regulation, which began on January 1, 2014.
  • January 2014 – Deal was reached on the EU fisheries subsidies regime, the EMFF, which would support the implementation of the CFP.
  • April 2014 – The European Parliament adopted the above deal.

The reformed CFP, if effectively implemented, will end overfishing, restore fish stocks to healthy levels, and provide greater financial support for responsible fisheries management. The only issue remaining is that it also still allows for subsidies for certain measures, including vessel modernization, which could contribute to overfishing. Hopefully that will be balanced by the increased funding for data collection, control and enforcement.

Infographic from OCEAN2012

Infographic from OCEAN2012

“Considerable leadership and political courage were displayed in securing reform, but this does not guarantee an end to EU overfishing,” Uta Bellion, director of The Pew Charitable Trusts’ EU Marine Programme said in a news release. “That requires member states to set sustainable fishing limits and implement the discard ban, ending the wasteful practice of throwing dead fish back into the sea. EU citizens want to see more fish in our waters and healthy oceans.”

To learn more:

Copyright © 2014 by Marine Science Today, a publication of Marine Science Today LLC.

About the Author

About the Author: Emily Tripp is the Publisher and Editor of She holds marine science and biology degrees from the University of Miami's Rosenstiel School of Marine and Atmospheric Science and a Master of Advanced Studies degree in Marine Biodiversity and Conservation from Scripps Institution of Oceanography. When she's not writing about marine science, she's probably running around outside or playing with her dog. .


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