Fish stocks in the Mediterranean Sea are deteriorating at an alarming rate

A recent analysis by the European Commission's Joint Research Centre (JRC) shows that 93% of the assessed fish stocks are overexploited, and a number of them are on the verge of depletion. In addition, the Mediterranean Sea has lost 41% of its marine mammals and 34% of the total fish population over the past 50 years. An estimated 10 000 to 12 000 marine species inhabit the Mediterranean Sea, but this extraordinary biodiversity is in grave danger. Further delays in concerted action could result in irreversible damage and a collapse of key stocks that are essential to the fisheries sector. In a study published in Nature's Scientific Reports, JRC scientists warn about pressures on the Mediterranean Sea that might push the ecosystem beyond the point of no return. The analysis looks at the historical changes in the Mediterranean Sea food web driven by environmental drivers and fishing efforts. It concludes that, over the past 50 years, the Mediterranean has lost 41% of the number of marine mammals and 34% of the total amount of fish. The largest reductions were found in the Western Mediterranean Sea and the Adriatic Sea (- 50%), while the reduction was much less in the Ionian Sea (- 8%).

Read more at: