I HAVE heard and read a lot about the plight of the Hastings fishing fleet and its EU quota system.
I have an opinion on this subject, so I raise the following points:
1. Without quotas there would be no fish stocks, as conservation appears to be very low on the commercial fishermen’s agenda. While ‘throwback’ is controversial, is it any worse than the ‘throwout’ of non-commercial fish that happened in the past? The mess that was Hastings Harbour is at least cleaner.
2. With advances in equipment today’s fish stocks have no chance. Improved nets and electronics means no hiding place for fish. So how can stocks be replenished?
3. May I suggest we follow the Norwegian system of rigid conservation areas. If a line was taken from Dungeness Point to Beachy Head, where inside this area no commerical fishing would be allowed and sport anglers were only allowed ‘catch and release’, this would at least give fish a chance.
Something drastic has to be done before it is too late.