September 26, 2008

Scottish Fisherman Call for Policy Change

Fishermen and environmental leaders in Scotland called for the European Union to change a policy that has $74 million in cod discarded every year.

The selection process required by the European Union means roughly half the cod caught in nets must be thrown back, a waste of 100,000 metric tons of fish a year, The Scotsman reported Friday.

"The scale of the problem beggars belief," said Scottish Environmental Minister Richard Lochhead. "Crazy European regulations mean that, at a time of worldwide food shortages and higher food prices at home, our fishermen are having to throw away up to $74 million worth of fish for which there is a perfectly good market."

Fisherman are calling for a policy that allows them to fish less but land more of what they catch, The Scotsman reported.

"There's simply no way of justifying it," David Ritter, senior oceans campaigner with Greenpeace, told The Scotsman. "One could get lost in superlatives. It's an appalling waste."