Judicial review of fisheries policy

At a hearing on 27th April in the High Court Mrs. Justice Andrews granted Harrison Grant client Greenpeace permission to challenge the UK’s implementation of the EU’s new Common Fisheries Policy (“CFP”).

In December 2013, following sustained campaigning by Greenpeace and others, the EU adopted a new regulation to reform the CFP, including a requirement that Member States allocate fish quotas based on environmental, economic and social criteria. Greenpeace claims that the new regulation means that the UK must change its current method of allocating fish quotas which is primarily based on historical fishing records from 1994-1996 and disadvantages the inshore fleet who use more environmentally friendly fishing methods. But despite the changed law, the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs decided that the UK’s historic method of allocating fish quotas was already compatible with the new regulation. The High Court has permitted Greenpeace to challenge the lawfulness of that decision.

The case has received substantial press coverage.

Nigel Pleming QC and James Bourke, instructed by Harrison Grant, appeared for Greenpeace.