Advice and Recommendations

The Pelagic AC provides credible, scientific, and consensus-based advice to inform pelagic fisheries policy, both upon the request of the European Commission and Member States, and on its own initiative. All advice and recommendations are developed and approved by the members of the Pelagic AC. 

Our advice — and responses to it — may be accessed below.

Show Filters
NWWAC/PelAC joint letter regarding the OREDP II Advisory Group

Following the successful joint NWWAC/PelAC Briefing on the Maritime Area Planning Act 2021 on 19 January, the NWWAC in conjunction with the PelAC, request with this letter to be included in the relevant stakeholder working groups on this topic in Ireland.

2023 Letter NWWAC PelAC
PelAC response on the Multiannual Plans for the North Sea and the Western Waters

The PelAC informed the Commission that after a discussion at the Working Group II meeting held on 22 February in Utrecht, the PelAC members concluded that it was not within the competence of the PelAC to submit a response to this specific consultation, since the pelagic species covered by the MAPs fall outside of the PelAC’s remit.

2023 Letter to COM
Call on the EC to support the ACs work

The Advisory Councils called on the European Commission to support their work on attracting new members by increasing the visibility of ACs as well as promoting their achievements. The ACs collectively feel there is a role for the Commission to play, and that efforts in this regard could be strengthened.

2023 Letter to COM
Call for urgent benchmark meeting for Western horse mackerel in 2023

PelAC requests an ICES (inter) benchmark meeting in 2023 that is jointly dedicated to the three horse mackerel stocks (Western, Southern and North Sea) combined, in order to secure an updated evaluation of the PelAC rebuilding plan for Western horse mackerel, as well as enable timely preparations of the negotiations for 2024 TACs.

2022 Letter to COM Commission Response
PelAC contribution to call for evidence for energy transition in the fisheries and aquaculture sector

Regarding the Commission’s call for evidence for the initiative on “Energy transition in the fisheries and aquaculture sectors” the PelAC embraces the emphasis placed by the Commission on multi-stakeholder consultation, and its intent to feed the input from stakeholders into the strategy and roadmap. The PelAC is keen to contribute to these developments and underlines the importance of securing engagement with stakeholders throughout the entire process.

The PelAC intends to deliver detailed input following a workshop foreseen in April 2023, which sets out to address the implications of energy transition in the pelagic fleet.

2022 Letter to COM
Physical attendance of designated ICES representatives to at least one key meeting of PelAC on an annual basis

The PelAC would like to underline its appreciation for ICES’s efforts throughout the years for delivering key presentations on the advice for the stocks under its remit, which forms an essential basis for the subsequent formulation of PelAC recommendations to the European Commission and Member States. However, based on experiences the PelAC cannot over-emphasize its conviction that in-person participation to our meetings by ICES would strongly benefit the interaction between ICES and stakeholders, as well as the quality of the discussion. Therefore PelAC kindly reiterates its request to ICES to review its travel policy and enable the physical attendance of designated ICES representatives to both but at least one of the key meetings on an annual basis.

2022 Letter to ICES
Call for acceptance rebuilding plan Western horse mackerel in bilateral discussions EU-UK

The rebuilding plan for Western horse mackerel was finalized by Pelagic AC and submitted to the Commission in 2020. This rebuilding plan was evaluated by ICES in 2021 and deemed precautionary.

The recent ICES advice for this stock (published on 30 September 2022) recommends zero catches in 2023. This advice reflects the urgent need to step up efforts in adopting this plan as soon as possible. The purpose of the rebuilding plan is to ensure stock recovery to safe biomass levels as well as a long-term stock exploitation with the objective of achieving MSY. The PelAC would be grateful if the Commission could pursue, as a matter of urgency, the acceptance of the rebuilding plan for this stock in its negotiations with the UK during the next meeting of the Specialized Committee on Fisheries (SCF) organized by the end of October.

2022 Letter to COM
Joint NWWAC/PelAC advice on the impacts of underwater noise and offshore wind energy developments on commercial fisheries

In 2020 the North Western Waters AC and the Pelagic AC embarked on developing advice to the European Commission on the impact of seismic and wind energy developments. The Advisory Councils are pleased to jointly submit this follow-up advice following the successful conclusion of their joint workshop held this year.

On both the European and the international level it is yet unclear to what extent (potential cumulative) effects of offshore wind energy developments on fishing areas, for example spawning grounds, nursery areas, or important habitats for fish stocks, are taken into account in a cross-border context, as policy, research and mitigation appear not to be streamlined.

We are at a time where renewable energy can help us to mitigate effects of climate change, however, this comes hand-in-hand with new ecological risks and pressures on already heavily environmentally impacted busy seas with other pressure factors taking place such as underwater noise.

2022 Letter to COM Commission response
Fishing opportunities 2023

The Pelagic AC provides recommendations on TACs in 2023 for stocks under its remit.

2022 Fishing opportunities 2023
Follow-up on the publication of the report on the evaluation of compliance with the landing obligation for mackerel in NS and NWW 2015-2017 and ongoing review

The regional groups are currently reviewing the evaluation of the compliance with the landing obligation for mackerel after the first report published in 2020. The PelAC expressed in several letters its great disappointment over EFCA and the regional groups’ refusal to publish the full report. While the PelAC’s request for the publication of this first report still stands, the ongoing review of the evaluation by the regional groups is an opportunity to rectify this situation and ensure full transparency. Once the review will be completed, the PelAC urges the High-Level regional groups to authorise and instruct the EFCA to publish not only the executive summary but also the integral report, regardless of its conclusions.

2022 Letter to Scheveningen MS Group Letter to SWW MS Group Letter to NWW MS Group

We use third-party cookies to personalise content and analyse site traffic.

Learn more