'Massive yokes' in sea taking our fish
Published 17/02/2016 | 00:00
A motion calling on the government to ban foreign owned factory freezer ships from fishing 13 miles off the Irish coast was supported at the meeting.
Cllr Davy Hynes said the FV Margiris and Annelies ilena, two of the world's largest super trawlers, along with a fleet of other EU flagged factory ships, have been fishing up and down the Irish coast over the past two months.
Cllr Hynes said many people in the County Wexford fishing industry are very concerned about this.
'There is huge pressure on fishermen. A lot of these people are struggling to make ends meet. To add insult to injury you have these massive yokes coming in and sweeping all before them.'
Cllr Deirdre Wadding said she wholeheartedly supported the motion.
She said the impact on the environment is devastating as they hoover everything up.
'They should be banned completely,' she said.
Cllr Johnny Mythen said thousands of tonnes of fish are taken from our waters by these ships, while Cllr Michael Sheehan said it was immoral for fishermen to have to dump their fish over the side of their boats.
Cllr Jim Moore said the largest freezer ship in Europe was built by an Irishman and used by the Irish fleet. He said a motion calling for a maximum size or capacity in EU waters would be more appropriate.
Cllr Mary Farrell said: 'I think it's outrageous that thee tankers can come in and take from our Irish waters.'
Cllr Fergie Kehoe said this is an EU issue, adding that quotas are a major problem.