Friday, 17 December 2010

more about the threat to mackerel

Lewis Smith in The Independent had an interesting article Iceland walks out of fishing talks (13/12/10). He wrote mostly about the recent problem of Iceland and the Faroes setting themselves large quotas for mackerel. They have chosen not to cooperate with other nations and to persue a path that will result in the decline of mackerel stocks.

Felicity Lawrence has written a good introduction to the problem of overfishing in her book Eat Your Heart Out. This book also explains many of the other problems connected to food production.

The other issue in Lewis Smith's article is UK quotas being distributed not directly by the government but by Fishing Producer Organisations. This means that the seas are being treated more as a privately owned resource and less as a publicly owned resource. This system is questionable in law and is leading to problems, such as fishermen with smaller boats losing out to those with bigger boats in getting a fair share of the quota. Fishing Producer Organisations mainly have members with bigger boats (trawlers), but the smaller boats are less damaging to fish stocks.

see my other post about mackerel fishing