Mr Karmenu Vella, Commissioner for Environment, Maritime Affairs and Fisheries, European Union, Mr. Giuseppe Castiglione, Undersecretary for the Ministry for Agriculture, Italy, Dna Isabel Garcia Tejerina, Ministra de Agricultura y Pesca, Alimentación y Medio Ambiente, Spain and Mr Stéphane Travert, Minister of Food and Agriculture, France
Why is this important
Beneath its glittering surface, the Mediterranean is in crisis - Mediterranean EU fish stocks are 96% overfished, many species are at risk of extinction, and illegal fishing is rampant. Tell EU fisheries ministers to use their power to save mediterranean fish stocks, and the food, culture and livelihoods that depend on them, before it’s too late!
Dear Ministers and Commissioner Vella,
The Mediterranean Sea is a global icon of a coastal paradise and has sustained civilizations for millennia. For southern Europeans, the Mediterranean is mare nostrum – our sea, the embodiment of a cultural identity. But that identity is under threat, with 96% of EU Mediterranean fish stocks overfished. Its future is in your hands.
While we appreciate your signing of the MedFish4Ever Declaration, this is not enough to fix the problem. We need more than “a plan to develop plans by 2020”. We need meaningful urgent action from national governments - and we need it now.
We call on your government, by 2018, to:
- Increase enforcement to stop widespread illegal, unregulated and unreported fishing, and end perverse subsidies fueling overfishing;
- Apply science-based fishing limits for commercial species, including emergency measures for severely depleted stocks, and give preferential access to fishers using methods with less impact on the environment and provide greater social and economic benefits;
- Create a network of fisheries restricted areas to protect the most vulnerable habitats, nursery and spawning grounds, to ensure that fish populations can rapidly rebound; and
- Use EU funds to remove the most environmentally destructive trawlers and substantially reduce the capacity of the fleet, and assist the transition of communities to more sustainable fisheries.
There is no time to waste. There are no more excuses. We need you to act.
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