Environmental group calls for better protection of Baltic Sea
May 20, 2011, 11:15 GMT
Warsaw - The future of Baltic Sea fisheries is at risk unless steps are taken to expand protected areas and end fishing subsidies, the environmental group Oceana said Friday in Gdansk, on Poland's Baltic coast.
The group said that its two-month research expedition showed the 'devastating impact of pollution, overfishing and destructive fishing practices' on the marine environment.
'An important step towards a sustainable exploitation of the sea is the designation of protected areas in which harmful dredging and bottom trawling must be banned,' said Michael Olesen, a marine scientist at the University of Copenhagen, who took part in the expedition.
Oceana said ending subsidies to the industry was critical to reverse overfishing. The subsidies encourage fishermen to overfish when there are hardly any fish left, the organization said.
Oceana is an international group that campaigns for the protection of the world's oceans.