The Government has been urged to take action on super trawlers, otherwise known as freezer factory vessels.
Sinn Féin MEP Liadh Ní Riada said these vessels have been netting huge quantities of fish along the Irish west and north-west coast since November. #
She said Kerry North–West Limerick TD Martin Ferris recently told the Joint Oireachtas Committee on Agriculture, Food, and the Marine that 12 pelagic factory boats have been fishing off Donegal.
“He stated that, according to Dutch news reports, up to 70% of their catch is being discarded and they are freezing the prime fish only,” she said. “This would mean thousands of tonnes of dead fish are being illegally dumped by these super trawlers.”
She also said supertrawlers have caused tens of thousands of euros of damage to other fishermens’ equipment, and that Irish fishermen have not received adequate support from Irish authorities in relation to compensation for the damage and loss.
A vessel would be stuck in port until the damage is repaired or equipment replaced. This would entail lost fishing time and lead to potentially crippling long-term financial costs, she said.
© Irish Examiner Ltd. All rights reserved