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Europe

Fishing net

Reforming the Common Fisheries Policy

The European Union voted through the reform of the Common Fisheries Policy in early 2013, following our long-running campaign involving governments, businesses, other environmental organisations and the general public to secure the best deal for the health of our seas. This provides a real possibility that our fisheries will be able to recover from decades of overfishing - and we are committed to working with stakeholders to ensure that the new legislation is implemented.

Fishing boat off the coast of Cornwall

Sustainable fisheries

Some fishing practices have become a major threat to the health of our oceans, destroying or altering the physical environment and changing the habitat where marine animals live. The current crisis facing worldwide fish stocks, and increasing reports of the impacts of fishing activities on the wider marine environment, have heightened consumer concerns and raised issues about the fish we eat.

Scampi © WWF-Canon / Edward PARKER

Sustainable seafood

As the global population continues to increase, demand for seafood is growing rapidly. Consumers can make a difference to the way our fish stocks are managed. By only choosing fish from healthy, responsibly managed sources, you can help drive the market towards sustainable seafood.

Atlantic salmon aquaculture (Salmo salar), east coast of Canada

Aquaculture

Aquaculture is an important industry in the UK, and is the fastest growing food production system in the world. We are starting to see farmed fish and shellfish appearing on retailers’ shelves and in restaurants more often now. However, the impacts from aquaculture can have an effect on nearby marine environments.

Bycatch on fishing vessel

Sustainable solutions

WWF-UK is calling for a variety of actions in order to reduce the impacts from fishing activities on the marine environment in the UK and Europe. We want to see the wasting of fish greatly reduced.

Related links

Marine Update 60 - Fisheries MPAs

Latest news

Bottlenose dolphin surfing a wave.

British Wildlife Photography Awards 2013 - the winners

The BWPA wildlife photography competition has generated another stunning selection of images and video of the UK’s natural beauty. And it’s been a good year again for the WWF-sponsored ‘Coast & Marine’ category, which scooped the overall top award thanks to George Karbus’s magical ‘surfing dolphin’ image.

Shipping accidents are a growing threat to UK seas

The waters around the British Isles have one of the highest numbers of shipping accidents in the world, a new study, released by WWF for World Oceans Day (8th June), has found.

The busy shipping lanes around the British Isles, North Sea and Bay of Biscay had the fourth largest number of shipping accidents in the world with 135 reported incidents between 1999-2011.

By-catch of Moon fish (Mola mola). French Tuna purse-seine fishery in the Atlantic ocean

Another step on the long road to phasing out discards

Last night, European Fisheries Ministers took another step towards phasing out discarding fish back to the water, the much publicised and disgraceful practice whereby up to 50% of fish in certain European fisheries are thrown back dead.