Save our Seas
Save our Seas
THEY are manufactured in their millions, carelessly flushed down the toilet and then washed ashore, making Scotland's beaches among the worst in Britain's litter league of shame.
MORE than 30 per cent of the North Sea should be turned into a network of protected marine reserves to help rebuild fragile fish stocks, according to an environmental pressure group.
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IT IS critically endangered and given a maximum "level five" conservation rating by the Marine Conservation Society. But now, thanks to a bungle by the celebrity chef Gordon Ramsay, sales of skate are soaring.
THE sea is an extremely important resource for Scotland. Our waters contain some of the best fishing grounds in the world, North Sea oil has been worth billions of pounds and marine energy brings the promise of a new economic dawn.
FOR decades, the merry-go-rounds in the funfairs of Scotland's coastal towns had virtually stopped turning, the paint on their plastic horses peeling and faded by the sun of bustling summers past.
WHEN John Smith left school in 1959, aged 15, there was only one real option open to him - a life at sea in the fishing industry which dominated north-east Scotland's economy.
WHEN a group of people on Arran decided in the mid-1990s to start campaigning for a marine reserve in Lamlash Bay, they found "people looked at us as if we were mad".
SCOTLAND'S fishermen are the most environmentally friendly in Europe, according to both conservationists and Scotland's Environment Secretary.
A MASSIVE audit of Scotland's seas, to discover the health of fish, animal and plant stocks, has been ordered by the Scottish Government. The first State of Scotland's Seas report will play a central role in the development of a marine bill to protect sea life.
WHIPPED up white and spitting salty spray, the waves that crash against our coastline are charged with hidden energy. Driven by winds and currents across thousands of miles of the Atlantic, they pound beaches and cliffs with enough raw power per foot for 100 homes.
THE helicopter drops through white clouds to reveal the dark blue of the North Sea and the white flick of cresting waves. In the distance is Alwyn North, two steel platforms linked by a walkway, resembling chained fists punching up from the deep.
THEY are the last of Scotland's true hunter-gatherers, the men who make a precarious living in the most dangerous job in Britain: harvesting the often rich bounty of the North Sea and the waters off the west coast.
WHAT price the bounty of Scotland's seas? If you were to watch dolphins leap in the waters of the Moray Firth, the answer, as the advert goes, would be: priceless. Yet if it were part of a two-hour round trip from Cromarty with EcoVentures, the more realistic answer would be £20 per adult.
THE Scotsman believes a network of marine reserves should be created around the coast to help safeguard our sealife.
THE controversial practice of transferring tonnes of crude oil between tankers will not be covered by a UK Marine Bill, it emerged yesterday, sparking fury among environmentalists.
NO-ONE knows exactly how or when it arrived on Scotland's shores, but this alien invader appears to be here to stay.
FROM trawlers to fish farms, gravel extraction to renewable-energy schemes, recreational diving to whale-watching trips, yachting to impromptu jetski races, humans are using the sea as never before.
IT IS something most of us hardly think of as we go about our daily lives. Out of sight and out of mind, our waste is largely someone else's problem.
MOST people today understand how climate change will affect the way we live in future, and realise the importance of taking steps to combat the threat from greenhouse gases.
SCOTLAND'S seas contain some of the most special marine environments in the world, but they are almost completely unprotected from human exploitation.
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Sunday 19 May 2013
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