‘A real test’ for the fishing industry
RTE 1 article ROME, June 26 (Reuters) – The Italian fishing industry is under fire from the public and the European Commission for the failure to address the problem of fishing waste in their waterways, while Italy is the worst offender in terms of pollution, Environment Minister Francesco Giustina said on Tuesday.
The minister said he would hold an emergency meeting of the Fisheries Policy Commission (FPCC) on Thursday to discuss a new report on the matter, the latest in a series of environmental assessments and reports released by the FPCC.
A recent study by the Commission for Sustainable Fisheries, commissioned by the government, found that fish caught off the southern coast of Italy were among the worst offenders.
Giustina called for a total ban on the sale and use of waste from fishing boats and for the implementation of measures to curb waste from ships and fishing vessels.
“We have to tackle this issue of fishing litter.
We have to find a solution.
The problem is not with the fish, it is with the waste,” he told reporters.
The fishing industry has been under intense pressure from environmental groups and the EU since the start of this year, when the first environmental assessment on fishing waste was released.
The FPCC, which is chaired by Italy’s environment minister, Giuseppe D’Amato, has been conducting a series a dozen public hearings since October.
The last meeting, in May, had been the first in almost a decade.
“The fishing sector needs to be protected.
It needs to work on improving the conditions of its workers.
And we need to do it now,” Giustine said.”
Our fishermen deserve better.”