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Challenges And Opportunities For Fleet- And Métier-based Approaches For Fisheries Management Under The European Common Fishery Policy

C. Ulrich, D. C. Wilson, J. R. Nielsen, Francois Bastardie, S. A. Reeves, B. S. Andersen, O. R. Eigaard
Published 2012 · Business

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Abstract The inconsistency of single-species objectives in a mixed-fisheries context has repeatedly been highlighted as a key issue in the current European Common Fishery Policy, and it has long been suggested that this issue would be better addressed through fleet (group of vessels) and metier (type of activity) – based approaches. Since the late 1980s, when such approaches were first introduced, there have been substantial developments in this area of science, to the point where the concepts of fleet and metier now underpin the whole EC Data Collection Framework. However, their implementation in the management system has been slow and difficult, being hampered by a number of intrinsic issues. Mixed fisheries are an ongoing “governance headache” combining management complexity, scientific uncertainty and political sensitivity. This paper summarises the current state of play for fleet-based approaches in EU fisheries management, and highlights our views on both their potential and the challenges they face in the context of the future CFP. As a convenient layer between the current single-stock level and the level of the individual vessel, fleet/metier- approaches could potentially address a wide range of issues, especially with regards to the policy emphasis on ecosystem-based fisheries management. However, the rigid categorisation they induce may not properly address the flexibility of individual vessels, and should therefore be supplemented by more detailed considerations at the local scale.
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