The health of our seas has been in steady decline for years – but there are solutions. Right now the Scottish Government is putting in place a network of Marine Protected Areas (MPAs) that can help recover our seas. MPAs are already working in Norway, Mexico, and Nova Scotia… and they can work in Scotland too. The science is clear. MPAs can help to recover our seas.
The Scottish Government has proposed measures for managing fishing in some inshore MPAs. However, there is still a risk that these management measures could be watered down.
#SupportMPAs by contacting your MSP
You can make a difference by letting your local MSP know what you think about the management proposals – particularly if you have an MPA within your constituency. It’s important to let them know that well-managed MPAs can have extensive environmental, social and economic benefits, and that these benefits can help support local communities. Support for these proposals within the Scottish Parliament will make a difference to ensuring that they are considered for the long-term ecological and economic benefits they can bring. If you #SupportMPAs, and want to see these management proposals deliver the benefits indicated by scientific evidence, please write to your local MSP.
Let’s make sure our representatives ‘Don’t Take the P’ out of our MPAs. Check out our interactive web map to see what the proposals mean for fishing activities within these MPAs.
Not sure what to write? Here are some ideas, based on our view of the proposals:
- I agree that scallop dredging and prawn trawling should be prohibited from the proposed management zones within the MPAs.
- These proposals should be passed into law as a first step toward protecting the MPA network and making a real improvement to our marine environment
- This management is vital for the long-term health of our waters and will also help support more sustainable fishing:
- Fewer fishermen will be impacted by these proposals than those who will actively benefit from them
- We should seek to help those fishermen impacted by these proposals to adapt, using existing support mechanisms
- MPAs should be protected in ways that benefit all society
- I want MPAs to achieve their full potential – the Scottish government must use these management proposals to ensure the best environmental, social and economic outcomes for our seas and all our communities
- The proposals need strengthening, not weakening. The margins of the South Arran MPA, outer Loch Sween and the central area of Upper Loch Fyne hold habitats which are overlooked by current proposals. I continue to support recommendations which are based on sound science.
Everyone has a stake in this. Our seas are a shared resource and must be managed so that sustainable approaches to fishing, marine tourism, sea angling, diving, aquaculture, recreation and renewables can thrive in our precious coastal waters. MPA management cannot be “business-as-usual” – we need to change the way we manage our inshore waters.
Earlier this year, over 4,500 people supported our #DontTakeTheP campaign and sent a message to the Scottish Government, highlighting the importance of proper fisheries management for inshore MPAs. The management now proposed (which you can view via our webmap) is much more progressive and will make a real difference to the health of our seas and the many communities that rely on them. We have documented this growing awareness of ‘seabed sense’ and wider support for change, but we still need to keep making sure that no-one takes the ‘P’ out of MPAs.
If you #SupportMPAs please make sure the Scottish Government knows you do too by:
- Sharing our video far and wide | via Facebook | via Youtube | via Twitter
- Contact your MSP (see above)
Read the history to this campaign here.