The Council of Ministers has agreed its position on the new Common Fisheries Policy: the discard ban has survived, though fish will still be thrown back. Now they enter final negotiations with the European Parliament - the end is in sight!See more...
added byFish Fight Team
The section of last night's programme where we talk about amounts and levels and protection focused on areas that are 'fully protected' - i.e. closed to all forms of extraction and deposition.
The 0.001% figure is based on the amount of sea in the UK given such statutory 'no-take' protection. There are 4 sites: Lundy, Flamborough Head, Lamlash Bay, and sea-fisheries exclusion zones in Strangford Lough (where the law is slightly different but effectively creates a no-take zone). These total just under 8 km2 of sea (JNCC). The UK fishery zone covers 735,300 km2 (UK Hydrographic Office). So that leads to the figure of 0.001%.
Similarly we used a figure of 'less than 1%' for the amount of ocean around the world that is 'fully protected'. That is based on estimates by the Pew Environment Group and the Marine Reserves Coalition. They acknowledge that it is difficult to accurately calculate this figure due to poor information in the World Database on Protected Areas but 'less than 1%' is regarded as the best possible estimate.
We acknowledge that bigger areas of both UK and global waters are 'protected'. That has a very variable meaning though - it may mean that just the most damaging forms of fishing are excluded, or sometimes it just means there are management measures in place but no actual change to fishing methods and activity. (it's worth noting that the Marine Reserves Coalition have revised the global figure on 'protected' to 3.2%: http://openchannels.org/news/mpa-news/new-calculation-world-mpa-coverage-twice-previous-estimates-still-far-below-target)
The 'Save our Seas' campaign is focusing on the need to protect more of Britain's seabed from the more damaging methods of fishing in new Marine Conservation zones, and low-impact methods of fishing will rightly continue in most of these MCZs. We do support the need for small 'fully protected' areas as well. This is set out in more detail in our Charter, on the website: http://www.fishfight.net/the-fish-fight-charter/