Edition 1471
21 April 2018
Edition: 1471

Read this week's issue online exactly as it appears in print.

Twitter

Sardines are back on the menu

in News · 14-12-2017 12:50:00 · 0 Comments

A proposed sardine fishing ban is no longer set to come into force in Portugal. The only concession made to date is that sardine fishing is to start a month later in 2018 and is to be more tightly controlled, the Portuguese sea minister, Ana Paula Vitorino said in Brussels.

Sardines are back on the menu

The announcement came after a meeting between Ana Paula Vitorino, her Spanish counterpart, the European fisheries commissioner and the EC Director General of Fisheries, in which they agreed to start the fishing season a month later in May, both in Portugal and Spain.
Ana Paula Vitorino said there is still a strong need to implement sustainable fishery measures, meaning, for example, that if smaller and younger sardines are seen in some marine sectors, the fishing will be forbidden in those areas.
The Portuguese-Spanish plan is still being analysed by Brussels, although the Portuguese government hopes to obtain a positive answer from the European commission regarding their proposals.
In comments to the Lusa News Agency on Wednesday, Ana Paula Vitorino, said the marathon negotiation on fishing in general for 2018 that lasted almost 24 hours was “quite favourable” given Portugal’s expectations, namely the reduction of hake capture.
“The results of this council are quite favourable compared with the expectations”, she told reporters, giving the example of young anchovies, where the original proposal was a 20 percent cut, but fishing limits were eventually kept unchanged for next year.
The hake limits in national waters suffered a 12 percent cut, less than the 30% initially called for by Brussels and the horse mackerel are reduced by 24 percent but the quotas are never reached in any of these species by Portuguese fishermen.
Ana Paula Vitorino stressed the good cooperation with her Spanish counterpart, Isabel Tangerina, in the negotiations and that the two countries worked “in close cooperation”.
Earlier this year, the International Council for Exploration of the Sea (ICES) advised that sardine fishing be completely suspended in Portugal and Spain in 2018 given what it termed the huge drop in stocks in the last ten years.
Minister, Ana Paula Vitorino, had at the time appeared to take the Council’s advice, when she revealed that sardine fishing along Portugal’s northern and central coastlines could be banned in order to preserve stocks.
The APROPESCA fishing association said any proposed fishing ban in 2018 would lead to the “death of the industry.”
The assocation added that hardly any small sardines were captured this year, which he believes is proof that the sustainability of the species is not endangered.
Algarve MP, Cristóvão Norte, has called for the government to reveal full details of talks it has held and will hold with Spain over the matter, adding that the recent ECIS report has caused widespread alarm.
A recommendation in the summer called for a ban on sardine fishing for 15 years, which the government rejected.
At the time, the ICES said that rebuilding to above a safe biomass limit with a high probability (above 95 percent) could take around 15 years with no fishing.
The ECIS said this week that due to logistical issues with the Portuguese spring acoustic survey, 2017 data could not be processed for the usual advice timing in July.
The organisation explains in its latest report that numbers of young sardine joining the stock are low, reflected in recruitment and productivity rates, and the stock biomass is substantially low.
The ECIS added that the biomass level limit cannot be reached in 2019 even without any catch in 2018 and advised a zero catch for 2018 in order to help the stock recover.
According to the ICES, sardines stocks have fallen from 106,000 tonnes in 2006 to 22,000 in 2016.
In related news, a study conducted by the University of Porto has revealed that aquatic ecosystems are at risk due to the hormonal pills discharge in residual waters and to climate change.
The study, published by Lusa, analysed how the increased temperatures (3 degrees Celsius above normal for the season), combined with hormones such as progesterone discharged in sewers, can harm fish reproduction.
Patricia Cardoso, a researcher from the Interdisciplinary Centre for Marine and Environmental Research (CIIMAR) at the University of Porto, explained that most of the hormones are being discharged from hospitals and households.
The researcher said the main problem lay in the wastewater treatment plants, which are not eliminating the hormones as they should and so fish are being especially affected by the changes in their ecosystem. She said that the pharmaceutical industry is constantly releasing new products into the market and it is very important to know which ones are contaminating the environment.

Comments

Be the first to comment on this article

Interactive Topics, send us your comments/opinion on this article.


Please enter the letters as they are
shown in the image.
Letters are not case-sensitive.
Edition 1471
21 April 2018
Edition: 1471

Read this week's issue online exactly as it appears in print.

Twitter

Pub

  • Abacoz
  • Cris Piessens
  • Audiocare
  • Toldolanda
  • Blacktower
  • International Algarve Fair 2018
  • Veronica Pisco Lawyer
  • Land and Houses
  • Linen Etc
  • SOS Sky Digital TPN Banner
  • Marcela Properties
  • Wellness Dreams
  • Nobel International School
  • R.C. Brown
  • Intermarche