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Use of innovative fishing nets reduces CO2 footprint


In a continuous search for possibilities to make the pelagic fishing techniques more sustainable, Vrolijk and Jaczon have decided to replace part of the traditional fishing nets being used with a new type of net made of the lightweight and super strong UHMwPE (ultra-high molecular weight polyethylene) fiber, known under the brand name Dyneema®. The use of this much thinner material in the production of pelagic fishing nets yields direct tangible environmental advantages. The reduced resistance of the nets when being towed through the water reduces fuel usage during fishing and thereby reduces the CO2 footprint of the fleet.

The innovative trawler nets of Dyneema® were developed by Maritiem BV in Katwijk, in close cooperation with DSM in Heerlen (Netherlands). Dyneema® combines maximal strength with minimal weight. It is 15 times stronger than high quality steel and up to 40% stronger than aramid fiber. Dyneema® floats on water and is very resistant to degradation by moisture, UV radiation or chemicals. Martiem BV worked together closely with Johan Müller and Eric Roeleveld of Vrolijk en Jaczon in designing and testing the new fishing nets. Müller and Roeleveld are very positive about the new nets, of which there are now eight in use in the fleet.

“The size and model of a net is dependent on the species being targeted, the fishing area and the size of the fishing vessel”, explains Johan Müller. “The Dyneema® fiber is used in the hand split front net with a mesh size of 800mm and larger. Previously, these were knotted, but the knots had a tendency to shift. With the hand split nets this is history and so for these parts Dyneema® can be used. Also for the seam lines and the bottom, upper and side tendons Dyneema® is used”.

We are conscious of the impact that our activities have on the environment”, adds Roeleveld. “This is specifically why we structurally work on reducing our CO2 footprint where possible. The use of the much thinner Dyneema® nets provides a direct contribution to this. And as an unexpected added advantage, the nets proved to be more easily handled by the crew, due to their lower weight, which means that they are also safer for use. We are thus very happy with the results so far and we intend to continue to make use of the nets after the test phase.  

Net storage in IJmuiden where the fishing nets are kept outside of the seasons that they are used in.


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