DUBLIN, Ireland: The highest court in the EU is preparing to hear a case in which Ireland is accused of the "systemic violation of a legally-binding deadline to end overfishing."
This week, Friends of the Irish Environment will seek to detail before the European Court of Justice how Ireland has not met the Common Fisheries Policy regulations passed in 2013 to require EU members states to end overfishing.
Overfishing is defined as catching so many fish at one time that fish are not able to properly breed and the species is diminished in size.
"If you prioritize short-term socio-economic objectives, you will end up depleting stocks. Therefore to achieve the long-term objectives of the Common Fisheries Policy, fisheries closures have to happen in the short term. This is a consequence we have to deal with and not avoid simply for the sake of preserving short-term socio-economic interests," said Friends of the Irish Environment director Tony Lowes, as quoted by the Irish Examiner.
Charity ClientEarth is supporting the Friends of the Irish Environment action.
The case against Ireland marks the first time the EU court has heard an overfishing case.
In 2020, more than 300 scientists, including 50 from Ireland, petitioned EU Commissioner for the Environment, Oceans and Fisheries Virginijus Sinkevicius to intervene in overfishing in Ireland.