Join the public debate to save the ocean

The French National Commission for Public Debate (CNDP) is organizing a major debate on the future of the oceans until April 2024. Renewable energies, Marine Protected Areas and the social and ecological transition of fishing are all on the agenda.

While French President Emmanuel Macron and the President of the region of Brittany Loig Chesnais-Girard have both adopted industrial fishing lobby rhetoric, BLOOM has posted its opinion on the online platform for public debate, and invites all citizens wishing to reconcile social justice and ecological voluntarism to do the same. Here’s why:

The ocean is now on the brink of collapse with chronic overexploitation of fish populations, destruction of marine ecosystems, plastic pollution, marine heatwaves, multiplication of “dead zones” deprived of oxygen and acidification at an all time high… Furthermore, the European Corpernicus institute reported on 8 February this year that global temperatures have been on average 1.5°C higher over the past twelve months compared with the pre-industrial period.

Faced with this extreme loss of biodiversity and increasingly alarming climate change, UN Secretary-General António Guterres stressed in 2022 that maintaining the status quo was tantamount to “criminal abdication”.

In this context of urgency, the future of the ocean is crucial. Indeed, the ocean is both a treasure trove of biodiversity and a major ally in the fight against climate change: it acts as a real planetary thermostat, producing half of the Earth’s oxygen and absorbing over 90% of the excess heat emitted by human activities and up to a third of our CO2 emissions. Yet, as the Intergovernmental Panel on Biodiversity (IPBES) points out, industrial fishing is the activity that has had the greatest impact on marine biodiversity and ocean health over the last fifty years.

BLOOM’s contribution to the public debate

However, contrary to scientific recommendations and international and European objectives to combine social justice and ecological voluntarism, French President Emmanuel Macron and President of the Region on Brittany, Loig Chesnais-Girard, have both reduced the question of the social and ecological transition of fishing to a question of hydrogen engines, aligning themselves with the discourse of the industrial fishing lobbies, particularly the UAPF and Europêche.

Faced with the urgent need to act, and with the window for action closing a little more every day, BLOOM has drawn up recommendations to “bring the ocean back to life”, and produced a list of “15 points to save the ocean, the climate and jobs. In the context of the CNDP public debate, BLOOM reiterates these proposals, which are essential to safeguarding the marine environment and defending social justice in the fishing industry:

  1. Decommission the bulldozers of the seas by 2030: initiate the transition of the fishing sector by “de-trawling” European fleets
  2. Create genuine Marine Protected Areas: protect them from all infrastructure and industrial activity, and place 10% of our waters under “strict protection”
  3. Stop subsidizing the destruction of the ocean: put an end to public aid supporting harmful activities
  4. Defend small-scale fishing: allocate fishing quotas as a priority to vessels of less than 12 meters using passive gear (traps, lines, nets, etc.)
  5. Immediately exclude mega trawlers from our coastlines: ban boats over 25 meters from operating in coastal waters
  6. Move away from unsustainable aquaculture, particularly that dependent on small-scale fishing: ban the farming of carnivorous or invasive species, and authorize only seaweed and shellfish (oysters, mussels, etc.) farming projects on coastal areas
  7. Promote fair representation of small-scale fishing in the face of industrial lobbies: guarantee small-scale fishing fair representation, proportional to its social importance, with European and national bodies
  8. Ensure that renewable energies respect marine ecosystems and small-scale fishing: prohibit wind farm projects in Marine Protected Areas and vulnerable eco-systems, favor sites far from the coast to preserve small-scale fishing, and modify the distribution of the wind energy tax
  9. Put an end to plastic pollution, particularly that caused by fishing: guarantee a reduction in the environmental impact of plastic products over their entire life cycle by preventing their abandonment, loss and dumping at sea.

How to get involved:

If you too would like to make your voice heard in order to bring about a real transformation in our relationship with the ocean, you can take action. All you have to do is submit your contribution to the public debate by participating online.

It couldn’t be easier! Your contribution is just a few steps away:

  1. Create an account (on the French website) here, by clicking on the “Register” button in the top right-hand corner.
  2. Confirm your e-mail address by clicking on the link in your mailbox.
  3. Leave your opinion here.

You are free to draw inspiration from our contribution, available here (in French), or from our detailed proposals, available in our “15 points to save the ocean, the climate and jobs“.

Share :