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.

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Name Summary Year Downloads
Inclusion of PelAC genetics studies in Data Collection Framework

The Pelagic AC believes it is vital that the methods used for genetics sampling and analysis are included in the Data Collection Multi-Annual Programme that is currently under development.

2021 Letter to Commission on Data Collection Framework (DCF) Commission response
Position paper on the evaluation of the Control Regulation

The focus group on control and technical measures has provided a position paper on the current Control Regulation providing a starting point for further discussions.

2021 PELAC position paper control regulation 31032016
Deep sea mining in international waters (joint LDAC-PelAC-NWWAC advice)

From the LDAC-PELAC-NWWAC, we would like to see further transparency and an integrated multi sectorial database containing data from all ocean activities including fisheries, oil and gas exploitation, seabed mining, etc. in both non-EU exclusive economic zones and the high seas.

2021 Letter to Commission on deepsea mining in international waters Commission response
Request for inclusion of pelagic chapter in future STECF Annual Economic Reports

The Pelagic AC reiterates that a pelagic chapter would present the sector proportionally relative to the demersal fleet and highlight its importance in Europe in terms of economic performance. It would also capture the impact of reductions in catch advice. PelAC is requesting STECF to include a chapter on pelagic fisheries in its AERs but on a continuous basis.

2021 Letter to COM for second request PELAC chapter STECF fleet report Commission response Letter to STECF for request PelAC chapter STECF fleet report
ICES advice following EU request to assess the rebuilding plan for Western horse mackerel

PelAC requests the Commission to pursue the general acceptance of the rebuilding plan for this stock in its negotiations with the United Kingdom, in order to jointly request that ICES use the rebuilding plan as a basis for the top line of the advice (rather than in a catch options table) for the TAC advice for Western horse mackerel in 2022, and onwards.

2021 ICES advice following WHOM rebuilding plan Commission response
Consultation – Review Marine Strategy Framework Directive

Pelagic Advisory Council welcomes the opportunity to share responses to the Commission’s questionnaire on the review of the Marine Strategy Framework Directive (MSFD). One key recommendation from the Pelagic AC for improvement would be, to reflect on what can be done to enhance the engagement of stakeholders in the field of (pelagic) fisheries to the MSFD.

2021 Letter to COM on MSFD
Request to ICES to review EASME genetics sampling report

The Pelagic Advisory Council would like to formally inquire about the status of the review of the final report for the EASME-funded project ‘Herring in Divisions 6.a, 7.b and 7.c: Scientific Assessment of the Identity of the Southern and Northern Stocks through Genetic and Morphometric Analysis‘, which concluded in December 2020.It is imperative that this review is conducted as soon as possible so that the results of the project can be incorporated into the revised stock assessments that are being developed for the forthcoming benchmark assessments.

Update 1: the final project report for the EASME-funded project ‘Herring in Divisions 6.a, 7.b and 7.c: Scientific Assessment of the Identity of the Southern and Northern Stocks through Genetic and Morphometric Analysis‘, which concluded in December 2020, has now been published on the EU Publications Office.

Update 2: PelAC letter to Commission sent on 4 May: The Commission has been asked if this formal review has been requested from ICES. If it has not, PelAC request that this recommendation be expedited as a matter of urgency, to enable timely completion before the first benchmark meeting of 6a, 7bc herring expected in November 2021.

2021 Request to review EASME genetics sampling report Final project report of EASME funded project: herring 6a 7bc sc assessment identity stocks gen and morph analysis Letter to Commission on follow-up Commission response PelAC letter to Member State Ireland on peer review EASME report PelAC letter to Member State Netherlands on peer review EASME report
CIBBRiNA project

The issue of bycatch of sensitive species in pelagic gears was recently selected as a core theme to work on within our Ecosystem Focus Group (EFG). It is recognised within the EFG that further development of a sound knowledge base as regards bycatch data, impacts on sensitive species and effective measures, would progress our work in a meaningful way. The CIBBRiNA project is therefore considered timely and relevant.

2021 2122PAC12 PelAC letter of support CIBBRiNA
Social dimension to fisheries management and policy

The joint letter highlights a number of important legal instruments for maritime safety and labour in EU fisheries and underscores the pressing need to ensure all necessary elements are appropriately and rapidly transposed into relevant community and national law, for the benefit of seafarers and their communities. The central tenets of this joint communication, for which we would like to express our strong support.

2021 Letter to COM on social welfare Commission response Commission response (annex)
PelAC request to NSAC and NWWAC to deal with pelagic stocks

PelAC has sent letters to NSAC and NWWAC to request to deal with pelagic stocks in several areas: CFP 1380/2013, ICES sub areas IV and IIIa (Sprat, Norway pout, Greater silver smelt), ICES divisions IVa–c, 6a and Subdivisions 20-22 (Sandeel), ICES subarea VI and areas VIIa-k (sprat), Union waters of ICES areas VI and VII (Greater silver smelt).

The NSAC/NWWAC are currently not issuing advice for these stocks.

We propose that the Pelagic AC covers these stocks informally while awaiting the next reform of the CFP, where Annex III can be amended formally to reflect this change.

2021 Letter to NSAC NSAC response Letter to NWWAC NWWAC response

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