Rainbow colored tropical fish, jumping dolphins, and incredible sea turtles are often what comes to mind when thinking of the oceans. The deep sea, dark and less colorful, but possibly even more awe-inspiring, can sometimes be ignored since it is so far below our world. That may be why, in the European Union (EU), the main regulation to manage fisheries occurring in this fragile world have not been updated since 2002.
The current regulation covers only a fraction of the species being caught, and even among those the majority have been overfished. Infamous bottom trawls lead the parade of poor management, throwing away up to 80 percent of what they catch. Many deep sea creatures take decades to mature for reproduction, making overfishing these species especially dangerous.
The good news is that the European Parliament is set to vote on new regulations to improve the management of these deep sea fisheries on December 10, after which the EU Fisheries Ministers will need to finally come together up with Parliament for an agreement to protect the wondrous deep ocean of the North-East Atlantic.
To better explain the issue, Oceana Europe produced an excellent infographic taking us from the problem to the solutions on the table.