In a shockingly wasteful move that has angered campaigners and authorities alike, a Dutch-owned trawler has somehow shed an estimated 100,000 dead fish into the Atlantic Ocean off the coast of France.
Shocking images and footage of the spill have been shared by Sea Shepherd, which has raised concerns including by the EU fishing regulators.
The shocking images show a carpet of dead blue whiting floating in the sea, covering an enormous area of 3,000 square meters/32,300 square feet. The fish are normally used to produce fish oil and meal and fish fingers.
Virginijus Sinkevicius, the European Union Commissioner for environment, oceans, and fisheries, stated that he is looking for “exhaustive information and evidence about the case.”
According to an industry body, the Pelagic Freezer-Trawler Association (PFA), which represents the shipowner, the incident occurred due to the rare event of a rupture in the ship’s nets. In a statement, the trade body clarified:
“In line with EU law, this has been recorded in the vessel’s logbook and reported to the authorities of the vessel’s flag state, Lithuania.”
This claim is disputed by both Sea Shepard and other environmental groups who argue the vessel was actually discharging a cargo of fish it did not want to process. This discharge would be illegal and is banned under EU law.
You can check out a video of the shocking waste below.