Brendan Griffin TD
Wednesday, February 27th 2013
Griffin welcomes EU fisheries agreement to ban discards
Fine Gael Kerry TD, Brendan Griffin, has welcomed the conclusion of a deal this morning (Wednesday) by EU Fisheries Ministers to ban discards. The marathon talks, which lasted over 21 hours and were chaired by Agriculture Minister Simon Coveney, ended with an agreement that will see discards phased out from next year.
“I would like to commend Minister Coveney for his work on this very difficult matter. The deal agreed in Brussels overnight is an historic agreement that will finally end the practice of discards. There are strong economic, environmental and moral reasons why discards must be banned and I am glad that the practise will be phased out from next year.
“Minister Coveney has been determined to tackle this problem for some time and through this agreement he has delivered for the Irish fisheries community and for the entire sector across the EU.
“The deal is an important step forward towards reaching political agreement on the reformed Common Fisheries Policy (CFP). Minister Coveney will push forward this reform agenda as part of the Irish Presidency of the EU, and will go on now to engage directly with the European Parliament and Commission on the CFP.
“The discard problem affects every fishing nation across the EU, and a solution to the problem involves considerable cooperation. Under the deal, discards will be phased out from the beginning of next year for pelagic stocks, working towards a ban on discards to fisheries in the Mediterranean, the Black Sea and all other EU waters by January 1st 2017.
“The change in approach to discards will include the introduction of smarter and more selective fishing gear, to modernise the way we fish. This morning’s deal is a very positive one, as it will help our fisherman adapt to the new environment, and it will make the industry more environmentally friendly and sustainable as we move into the future.”