The fishing industry is of great importance to many citizens in the South West, and one of its longest-serving MEPs, Graham Watson
, has joined those backing plans for changes to Europe's fisheries policy, and has called for his two UKIP MEP colleagues to follow suit.
Maria Damanaki, the European Union’s Fisheries Commissioner, has already said she wants to install a science-led approach to fishing quotas
and ban the wasteful practice of discarding fish into the sea, dead,
when quotas have been exceeded. To do this fisheries management is expected to be transferred from Brussels to regional organisations involving local fishermen, food companies and environmentalists.
Mr Watson believes that Europe's seas are capable of supporting many more fish than now exist, but overfishing is a major threat. "Changes are needed urgently to ensure that people still have fish on the table in 30 years' time,
" he said
. "In many European waters there are too many boats chasing too few fish. If we fail to take action we risk emptying the seas and betraying future generations.
Drawing attention to the lack of support expressed by his two fellow UKIP South West MEPs, Mr Watson also called on the UKIP-pers to get their act together: "All mainstream parties in the UK are supporting this campaign in Brussels, but not UKIP.
"I call on Trevor Colman and the Earl of Dartmouth to support this campaign for a sustainable future for our huge fishing community in the South West.
Labels: Graham Watson