There is a wave of change approaching. Our seas are in poor health; Scotland’s Marine Atlas shows that nearly all our coastal and marine habitats and species have been impacted on in some way.
To address this the Scottish Parliament passed the Marine (Scotland) Act in 2010, placing a specific duty on Scottish ministers to act to “further the achievement of sustainable development, including the protection and, where appropriate, enhancement of the health of” Scottish seas.
That is why we now welcome the Scottish Government’s proposals for fisheries management for inshore Marine Protected Areas.
These measures – due to be laid in Parliament in the coming weeks – will make a considerable contribution to the protection and recovery of Scotland’s most naturally diverse and important areas of sea.
It is the first step in a long, but necessary journey. This environmental recovery will underpin the long-term resilience of Scotland’s rural and coastal communities by broadening opportunities for sustainable marine activities.
In short – they offer a net ecological and economic gain.
Marine Conservation Society
National Trust for Scotland
Royal Zoological Society of Scotland
The Scottish Ornithologists’ Club
Scottish Wildlife Trust
Whale and Dolphin Conservation