Current International Update
International developments reported in the current issue of ELR's Weekly Update appear below. For previously reported international news, please use the filter function on the left.
Volume 43, Issue 15
European fisheries ministers agreed to a plan aimed at tackling overfishing last week, but the deal disappointed environmental campaigners by failing to agree on an outright ban on the practice of discarding healthy fish at sea. Ministers agreed to end discards, but the ban will be phased in from 2015 rather than this year, and fleets will still be allowed to discard up to five percent of their catch, as ministers argued some inadvertent catch was unavoidable. Some member states pushed for an allowable discard rate up to ten percent, while Sweden pushed for a zero discard rate.
China is prepared to set anti-dumping duties on polysilicon, a raw material used in the production of solar panels, after determining it was being sold below cost, according to two sources. The Ministry of Commerce has completed probes determining the United States and European Union are subsidizing producers, but said that it would hold off on setting duties until the EU issues its own anti-dumping duties against China.
Experts determined that a nuclear reactor on the west coast of Japan is located on ground at high risk of an earthquake, beginning a process that will likely end with the first permanent shutdown following the 2011 Fukushima disaster. Closing the reactor would be the most stringent measure yet adopted, though the industry currently only has two out of 50 reactors running as it awaits safety checks from the new regulator. The possible permanent closing of the reactor may signal a change in the way Japan deals with its nuclear industry. "It is no longer business as usual.