For years, campaigners have been fighting against industrial fishing in European waters and last week, at long last, they had something to celebrate. Their target has been the huge factory ships that hoover up everything in their wake, discarding the dead fish they don\’t want – often half the catch – and returning to port with their quotas met the most profitable way. The result has not just been dwindling fish stocks – the entire marine ecosystem is under assault, including the coastal fishing communities that depend on it for their livelihood.
No one European country can make a difference by itself: fish do not respect borders. In any case, the danger for any one country acting unilaterally to husband fish stocks and ban the practice of discarding dead fish is that if others do not follow suit it will be the sucker. It will have hurt its own fishing interests just to benefit others. This is a problem that can only be solved by European countries acting together.
So the EU\’s about to have a fishing policy which isn\’t certifiably insane.
This is something that could only be done at EU level.
Hmm. That will come as news to those non-EU countries, like Norway, Iceland and the Faroe Isles, which have long had fishing policies which are not certifiably insane.
Hutton\’s claiming as a merit of the EU what is actually the problem with the EU: not being able to act nationally on such matters of national interest. Manipulative little cunt, isn\’t he?