The meeting of the EU Mediterranean Advisory Council for Fisheries (MEDAC) was completed last Friday in Venice. Archipelagos Institute for Marine Conservation, is an important member of the Advisory Council, as it is one of only four environmental organisations in the Mediterranean that has the right to vote. The purpose of this Advisory Council meeting was to identify new solutions and tools to enable the enforcement of transitional fisheries management solutions, with a shared ecosystem approach.
There is growing frustration as current management schemes do not bring a result in halting the ongoing decline of Mediterranean fish stocks. European institutions recognise that more than 90% of fish populations in the Mediterranean have been overfished. To date the slow, bureaucratic approach to fisheries-management has not kept pace with the rate in decline of fish stocks. Whilst this continues, Member States in the Mediterranean, do not implement effective fisheries management measures.
Archipelagos Institute and the other environmental organisations, as well as many fisher’s organisations, which are part of MEDAC emphasise that we cannot continue to expect results from theoretical approaches and mathematical models applied on fisheries are inadequate and do not reflect the real conditions at sea. As a result there is a clear mismatch between these models, the management and reality. Hence, many of the proposed management measures are impossible to be enforced, while valuable time is being lost when the Mediterranean fishstocks are declining at a worrying rate.