'Fishyleaks' seeks to end excess
A new website has ben set up to end overfishing in EU waters.
“Fishyleaks” has been created to provide an anonymous and secure way to shine a light on bad practice.
The site has already received footage of fishing boats illegally dumping non-valuable dead fish at sea.
Our Fish, the environmental group behind the site, says government agencies have been turning a blind eye to “rampant” rule-breaking in the fishing industry.
In 2018, no undersized cod were reported landed last year, despite EU regulations that boats cannot discard any undersized fish they catch.
“We created Fishyleaks to help those who want to share information with us, in a confidential, anonymous and secure manner,” said Rebecca Hubbard, programme director at Our Fish.
“Europe’s fisheries are a common resource, for the benefit of all citizens, that should be managed sustainably and legally to ensure the future of coastal communities, food security and ocean health in the face of the climate crisis.
“Fishyleaks aims to provide a platform for people who witness activity that undermines these important aspirations, so that they can share that information, while minimising risk to themselves.”
About 1.7m tonnes of fish are estimated to be discarded across the EU every year when boats catch fish that they do not have a quota for, or because are of low commercial value.
British government reports have found many fishers are not aware of the EU ban and so are not implementing it, and that enforcement agencies are ignoring it too.
“Our Fish often receives news of infringements, but lack the evidence to prove it. By receiving information via Fishyleaks, we hope to expose the problems in the sector so that we can push for solutions,” Ms Hubbard said.
The organisation says it can verify content using the open source platform, GlobaLeaks.