Keywords: North Sea, European fisheries, fisheries management, overcapacity, overexploitation recovery, individual transferable quotas, ITQs, subsidies, global environmental issues, overfishing, fish stocks
Recovering from overexploitation: the European fisheries of the North Sea
In the last two decades, the fisheries of the North Sea have experienced substantial declines in the population of a number of commercially harvested species. The fisheries have also experienced the development of considerable overcapacity as a result of ineffective management and subsidies. Management of the fishery is complicated by the existence not only of multiple species and gears, but also multiple countries. Concerns about regional employment have also influenced management decisions to the detriment of the resource and industry. In this paper, the underlying factors that have shaped the current situation in the North Sea fisheries are discussed and potential solutions are explored.