Councillors have called on Minister Simon Coveney and relevant agencies to bring about a ban on factory freezer ships fishing close to the Irish Coast.
Cllr Norma Foley told the council’s monthly meeting that ‘super-trawlers’ were threatening the livelihoods of Kerry’s fishing communities.
Cllr Foley said factory freezer ships should be banned from fishing as close as 13 miles to the Irish coast and this was a necessary measure to ensure greater sustainability of fishing stocks.
The councillor added that she “doesn’t get” why the government isn’t taking a stronger position on the issue.
Cllr Johnny Healy Rae also tabled a motion, calling on the Minister to ban foreign super-trawlers from Irish seas.
He said the current situation is “ridiculous” due to a “lack of supervision from the Irish Government” and that the presence of these ‘super-trawlers’ were making it impossible for local fishermen to survive.
These ships are “floating factories” he said with “15 to 20 forklifts working on them” where fish was caught and processed onboard.
He added that the trawlers use the “premium 10%” of the catch and that the rest is mulched and disposed of.
Cllr Michael Cahill seconded the motion, adding that “Ireland’s waters were being robbed.”