LogoDiscardLess Strategies for the gradual elimination of discards in European fisheries

Improving the ecological efficiency of the bottom trawl fishery in the Western Mediterranean: It’s about time!

The improvement of fishing technology has been detrimental to the sustainability of fisheries, which is particularly clear for the bottom trawl fishery. Reducing its environmental impact is a key point for the development of a more sustainable fishery. The present work analyzed different possibilities to mitigate the impact of gears on the seabed and to increase the efficiency of the bottom trawl fishery of the Western Mediterranean. The analysis of three experiments showed that innovative technical and regulation measures can lead to benefits such as the reduction of fishing effort, the improvement of the cost-benefit relation and the reduction of the direct impact on the seabed and the indirect effect on the ecosystems through reduce discards and the emission of CO2 into the atmosphere. After years of studies focused on improving the sustainability of this fishery, it's about time to turn this improvement into reality.

Beatriz Guijarro, Francesc Ordines, Enric MassutĂ­

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