Community Research and Development Information Service - CORDIS

An ecosystem approach for fisheries

EU researchers drew up guidelines for applying the ecosystem approach to fisheries (EAF) in the Mediterranean and Black Sea countries. This approach involves the conservation of ecosystem structures, processes and interactions through sustainable use.
An ecosystem approach for fisheries
European countries are committed to adapting an EAF. However, there are currently gaps in this approach that hamper its full implementation in the management of fisheries in the Mediterranean and Black Seas.

The aim of the CREAM project, funded by the EU, was to identify these gaps in order to implement the EAF. The project successfully established an effective collaboration network among the key players in fisheries research and management within the two regions concerned.

Main actors in fisheries assessment and management in the Mediterranean and Black Seas reviewed the short comings of data and methods applied and how to overcome them. They also examined how best to improve the coordination of the fisheries research of European and International Cooperation Partner Countries (ICPCs).

CREAM evaluated the capacity to address EAF issues in the Mediterranean and Black Seas. In general, the highest scores were recorded for knowledge related to fishing fleet structure/behaviour as well as on fish species/habitats. The lowest scores were attributed to knowledge of modelling, and socioeconomic and management issues.

The results provided a global picture at a wide geographical level, giving useful information that enabled the implementation of the EAS to be properly addressed.

CREAM also organised a workshop titled Scientific strategy for a global approach to promote regional EAF in the Mediterranean and Black Seas. Its findings included the fact that the EAF's network vision should also promote the recovery of ecosystems and the rebuilding of marine commercial stocks and predatory fish species.

Two international EAF training courses were held to train the scientists and advisors involved in fisheries assessment in the Mediterranean and Black Sea countries. Sustainable fishing has been a long-standing priority for the EU, so every step closer to achieving this will be welcomed by policymakers, industry and consumers alike.

The CREAM project successfully established organisational procedures for the creation of a permanent network of fisheries scientists and management bodies. This strengthened the scientific basis of EAF application in Mediterranean and Black Sea fisheries. By integrating non-EU countries, it ensured that the foundation of an EAF for the two regions also reaches third countries.

Related information

Keywords

Ecosystem approach to fisheries, Mediterranean, Black Sea, fisheries, fishing
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