All trawling by vessels over 18m in length within Ireland’s six-mile zone will be outlawed from January 1st, Minister for Marine Michael Creed has reminded the fishing industry.
However, a “phased” system will operate for vessels fishing for sprat during 2020 and 2021, he says.
The new protection of inshore waters will “both support our small scale and island fishermen and provide wider ecosystem benefits, including for nursery areas and juvenile fish stocks”, Mr Creed said today.
“This new policy will, I believe, support the development of small scale inshore and sea angling sectors which is a Government commitment,” he said.
New EU conservation measures for the Celtic Sea, agreed at the December fisheries council last week, involve a 25% increase in the size of mesh in nets used to fish for mixed whitefish in this area, Mr Creed also noted.
“The new measures agreed for the Celtic Sea to help rebuild the depleted cod and whiting fish stocks will also provide substantial benefits for all our whitefish stocks including for our inshore waters,” he said.
“ As this will involve a change in the fishing gear used by Irish fishermen, I have asked BIM to provide grant aid support to them to reduce the costs of the required fishing gear change,”he said.