Major control campaign to clamp down on overfishing of bluefin tuna
The European Commission announced today the launch of a major EU control campaign aimed at preventing a repeat of last year's overfishing of Mediterranean bluefin tuna by a number of EU Member States. The launch of the Joint Deployment Plan (JDP), which will be coordinated by the Community Fisheries Control Agency (CFCA), marks the EU's determination to ensure that the fifteen-year recovery plan for the fishery, agreed within the International Commission for the Conservation of Atlantic Tuna (ICCAT) in November 2006, is fully respected. However, effective control measures will not suffice to ensure the sustainability of the fishery until the Member States concerned grasp the nettle and tackle the gross overcapacity of the fleet that targets bluefin tuna. As illustrated by a report published this week by the World Wildlife Fund (WWF), the whole fishery is plagued by overfishing by a fleet that keeps growing in size and efficiency both in the EU and in the other coastal states that target bluefin tuna.