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The Common Agricultural Policy after 2013 - July 19 & 20 Conference in Brussels

FARNET Support Unit attended this follow-up event of the process of wide consultations with stakeholders on the future shape of the CAP. This process was initiated in April 2010 by Commissioner Dacian Ciolos, who invited all the interested citizens and organisations to join the debate on the website “Your ideas matter”. The outcomes of the debate and the conference will be taken into account in a Communication about the future CAP which will be presented by the Commissioner in late November 2010. The conference, which was attended by approximately 600 representatives of stakeholders, offered a rich programme with many opportunities for discussion and exchange. 

More information about the conference and the consultation process

Axis 4 in The Netherlands: 25th June 2010 - lunch time conference in Brussels

At the initiative of the Dutch Ministry for Agriculture and Nature & Food Quality and the Province of Flevoland, and with the support of the European Commission, a lunch meeting was organized on the 25th of June at DG MARE, Brussels, to present the state of play of Axis 4 implementation in the Netherlands and, in particular, in the Province of Flevoland.

The meeting was hosted by Mr Philip Ten Napel, Axis 4 Officer at the Dutch Ministry for Agriculture, Nature & Food Quality. Mr Ten Napel outlined the country´s vision for Axis 4 and the role it could play in promoting the integration of local businesses into the sustainable development of fisheries areas as well as in fostering diversification and value added for local fisheries products.

Conservation and Industry Leaders form Alliance for ‘Real Reform’ of European Fisheries Policy

In April, the European Seafood Exposition saw the launch of a partnership between three key players of the European seafood industry. AIPCE-CEP, the EU Fish Processors and Traders Association, representing 130 000 employees, 4 000 enterprises and a production value of around €20 billion, Eurocommerce, which represents retail, wholesale and international trade interests to the EU, and the WWF, an organization active in over 100 countries, announced their alliance in proposing new fisheries management solutions in the framework of a reformed CFP in 2012.

The new alliance between WWF and European leading industries intends to show how to achieve these reforms in order to reap benefits for the environment and industry. Amongst the goals of this large partnership, particular attention will be given to the implementation of science-based long term management plans for all EU fisheries by 2015, the attribution of effective roles to regional bodies in developing fisheries plans and the maximization of the value from catch to consumer, avoiding waste and promoting added value at each stage of the supply chain.

Further information

Commissioner Maria Damanaki outlines the future steps of CFP reform at the European Parliament Fisheries Committee

Maria DamanakiOn the 17th May, Commissioner M. Damanaki presented the European Commission´s initiatives for maritime affairs and fisheries in 2010. She outlined elements of the future reform of Common Fisheries Policy and its timing, with the Commission hoping to have proposals on CFP reform ready for adoption by the College by summer 2011. She also addressed fisheries partnership agreements, the market dimension of the CFP and Individually Tradable Rights (ITRs).
Among the key points addressed, regionalization was discussed intensely, emphasizing the attention given by the Council to direct stakeholder involvement, bottom-up approaches and the design of regional entities per sea basin.

Further information

Have your say on the future of LIFE Nature & Biodiversity

LIFE is the EU’s financial instrument supporting environmental and nature conservation projects across the EU. Since 1992, LIFE has co-financed some 3115 projects, contributing approximately  €2 billion to the protection of the environment. In April, discussions were launched on the future of LIFE+ Nature & Biodiversity by the European Commission (DG Environment) LIFE Unit, via the new online LIFE Community Forum. The aim is to gather ideas and suggestions from stakeholders as to what has worked well in the current LIFE Nature programme and what should be changed ahead of the next LIFE Regulation. Moreover, a wiki tool has been developed by the Land Stewardship Network of Catalonia to collect ideas and suggestions from the LIFE community and beyond.

PISCES: a LIFE project to develop sustainable practices in the Celtic Sea

A pioneering €2.1M project launched on the 10th May to help ensure a sustainable future for the Celtic Sea.

PISCES, a project funded by DG Environment´s LIFE programme, will in the coming years look at methods to promote ecosystem-based approaches to the management of the Celtic Sea. The Celtic Sea is an intensively frequented and exploited maritime area with very specific characteristics in terms of biodiversity and ecosystems. Such characteristics led to the design of the « Irish Conservation Box », a maritime protected area covering over 100 000 km² and where special measures are enforced to control fishing and other extractive uses.

The PISCES project, led by WWF-UK in partnership with WWF-Spain and The Environment Council with additional support from SeaWeb and the Coastal & Marine Resources Centre, University College Cork, involves a core group of 27 stakeholders from England, Wales, Ireland, France and Spain, representing a range of activities such as coastal recreation, ports, shipping, offshore infrastructure, aquaculture and fisheries. These partners will collaborate with the aim to provide by 2012 a set of guidelines for delivering an ecosystem-approach to marine management for the Celtic Sea, enabling to ensure the continuity of these activities without jeopardising marine wildlife. 

More details:


The Irish Conservation Box

UK: Supporting Women to Work in Fisheries Management

Women working in fisheries management across England can now benefit from a £450 training grant, announced Lantra Sector Skills Council at the beginning of April. The training grant is available through the "Women and Work programme" of Lantra, an agency licensed by the UK government to promote capacity building  and business development in environmental and land-based industries. Lantra represents 17 industries and 1.5 million workers and volunteers in the environmental and primary production sectors. This programme is entering its fourth year after successfully securing funding to help another 670 women working in industries such as fisheries management. The grant will enable women working in the industry to develop their skills, careers and businesses and is available until February 2011.
More details

Offshore Wind Power and Marine Biodiversity

(image under creative commons - open source license)

Recent studies from the Department of Zoology from the Stockholm University (SE) and the Center for Environment Fisheries and Aquaculture Science (CEFAS) (UK) have shed some light on the benefits but also possible threats on the marine biodiversity posed by the development of offshore wind power farms. Whereas such structures could benefit some species by acting as artificial reefs attracting schools of fish and invertebrate populations, they could also represent an interference for others, for example those particularly sensitive to noise, physical disruption of the sea floor and magnetic fields. Both studies reveal the need for a deeper understanding of this type of industrial development of the offshore zone, which could hold great potential for the development of neighboring fisheries areas.

SWEDEN - Offshore wind power and wave energy foundations can increase local abundances of fish and crabs.

UK - Scientists call for more fisheries research on potential wind farm impacts

Conference on the Reform of the CFP, La Coruna, 2-3 May 2010

On May 2 and 3, over 230 people with an interest in fisheries (from Member State administrations, RAC's and ACFA, industry, NGO's, members of the European Parliament or representatives of the main EU institutions) gathered in La Coruna, Spain, to take part in a broad stakeholders’ conference discussing some of the main pillars of the reform of the Common Fisheries Policy.

Read more about the conference

MEPs call for a decentralised fisheries policy

At the end of February, the European Parliament adopted a non-binding report calling for a “radical” reform of the Common Fisheries Policy (CFP), to ensure the protection of fish stocks and the EU’s fishing industry. The report, which is a contribution to the wider public consultation on the reform of the CFP, stresses that fisheries management must abandon the traditional "top-down approach", instead emphasising regionalisation, subsidiarity and stakeholder involvement, to reflect the local particularities of Europe's seas and fleets.