Amsterdam, October 28, 2019: – Fishyleaks, a website aimed at ensuring that suspected abuses within the fishing sector can also be reported confidentially and anonymously, has launched a Dutch language version for the Netherlands.
Fishyleaks enables people working in the fishing industry, government agencies, scientific institutes or other sectors to report improper, unethical and illegal fishing practices. After the Fishyleaks site went live in English in July year, and now in Dutch, more languages are set to follow.
“With Fishyleaks we wanted to create a platform for those who want to share information in a secure way,” said Frederieke Vlek, campaign coordinator of Our Fish in the Netherlands. “That was necessary, because Our Fish regularly receives anonymous tips about abuses at sea, but cannot take any further steps due to a lack of concrete evidence”.
As in all EU countries, the Netherlands has committed itself to fishing laws under the Common Fisheries Policy, which means that they are obliged to put an end to overfishing by 2020 at the latest. This year the so-called landing obligation has been introduced in its entirety, as a result of which many species may no longer be thrown overboard, but must be brought ashore. This law requires that fishermen start fishing more selectively, or pay for catching unwanted fish. However, these new laws are useless if they are not properly observed or enforced at sea – and commitments to reliable controls have yet to be made by EU member states.
“This is where Fishyleaks can contribute: concrete evidence of wrongdoing helps spark the discussion about the necessity of good monitoring at sea,” said Vlek.
Clear signals that fishing laws are being breached makes a website such as Fishyleaks necessary. In 2018, up to 7,500 tonnes of North Sea cod may have been thrown illegally overboard in the United Kingdom, instead of being landed . Last summer, a UK House of Lords report also showed that the fishing industry in the United Kingdom is continuing to throw edible fish overboard, against all rules .
Our Fish had already received video material from 2014 as an example of such an abuse, demonstrating large quantities of pelagic fish thrown back overboard off the coast of Scotland.
Fishyleaks.eu has been set up together with the GlobaLeaks platform, which has the objective of supporting anonymous whistleblower initiatives.
The Fishyleaks website is currently available in English and Dutch, with other languages to follow. In the meantime, people can report abuses in their language of preference – Our Fish will take care of translation.
“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,” said Rebecca Hubbard, Programme Director of Our Fish. “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.”
Fishyleaks in English: https://fishyleaks.eu/en/
Fishyleaks in Dutch: https://fishyleaks.eu/nl/
Fishyleaks on Twitter: https://twitter.com/fishyleakseu
NL press release: Fishyleaks: Nieuwe website voor klokkenluiders in de visserijsector
Dave Walsh, Communications Advisor [email protected], +34 691 826764
The Guardian: ‘Fishyleaks’ website hopes to land those guilty of overfishing
Fishyleaks: New Website Aims to Blow Whistle On EU Overfishing
About Our Fish
Our Fish works to ensure European member states implement the Common Fisheries Policy and achieve sustainable fish stocks in European waters.
Our Fish works with organisations and individuals across Europe to deliver a powerful and unwavering message: overfishing must be stopped, and solutions put in place that ensure Europe’s waters are fished sustainably. Our Fish demands that the Common Fisheries Policy be properly enforced, and Europe’s fisheries effectively governed.
Our Fish calls on all EU Member States to set annual fishing limits at sustainable limits based on scientific advice, and to ensure that their fishing fleets prove that they are fishing sustainably, through monitoring and full documentation of their catch.
Follow Our Fish on Twitter: @our_fish