The Celtic League and Greenpeace have long campaigned about the depletion of fishing stocks by massive trawlers which hoover up everything in the sea. Not only are target species caught in the massive nets, but they trap and kill so much else, such as dolphins and other cetaceans.
A report published in October 2020, and which we included on this page, showed the extent of the threat to cetaceans by being accidentally captured in fishing equipment and nets across the fishing industry. An estimated 300,000 whales, dolphins and porpoises a year are killed in that way globally, the biggest threat of all to these creatures. Of course, many of those deaths are in the nests of super trawlers.
Disappointingly, with the exception of Greenpeace, conservation charities seem unwilling to express concerns about this massive destruction. Fisheries in small ports don’t benefit from the indiscriminate methods used by super trawlers. The small local fishing boats either have to go further to look for fish, as a greater risk to crew members’ lives, or go out of business. To protest about super trawlers is to support the people who work on the smaller boats.
Most of the super trawlers are operated by large countries and economic blocks, such as China and the EU. It could be said that they are too big and powerful to stand up to, so we shouldn’t bother. However, human greed, the thing which motivates massive companies and countries to operate these huge trawlers, is what has got us and our planet in the current mess. The greed and arrogance of larger countries is what the six Celtic nations have been up against for many centuries. To not protest and to do nothing is to condone the greed and destruction.
Mannin Branch Secretary,
Celtic League (11th September 2021)