Tuesday, 21 May 2019

UK House of Lords to hear evidence on realism of discard ban.

On May 22 the UK parliament's House of Lords EU Energy and Environment Sub-Committee will take evidence from the bodies responsible for enforcing fisheries legislation in England and Scotland.

It is also likely to ask whether the agencies believe the new rules are being fully complied with, and whether they have sufficient resources to detect non-compliance. It will question Tom Robertson of Marine Scotland, and Phil Haslam, of the Marine Management Organisation.

Topics of discussion are likely to cover:

  • How many cases of non-compliance have been detected since Jan. 1 this year and what penalties have been awarded?
  • What steps have been put in place to monitor compliance with the landing obligation?
  • How much fish that is suitable for human consumption but over a fisher’s quota has been landed since January?
  • Are there concerns about the extent of the exemptions to the landing obligation, particularly from a conservation point of view?
  • Earlier this year the House of Lords found the UK's fishing industry remained unprepared for full implementation of the common fisheries policy's landing obligation.

Despite the long lead-in time, when the committee examined the issue in November and December 2018 they found little evidence of the landing obligation being followed to date, and an almost unanimous view that the UK was not ready for full implementation, said the committee.

"It cannot be right that, five years after legislation is agreed, the UK is in a position where it cannot enforce the law -- both because it does not have the tools to monitor compliance and because doing so could cause significant harm to the fishing industry," the committee wrote as part of its summary.

Full story courtesy of Undercurrentnews.