UK SAC's/MPA's/MCZ's
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  1. #1
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    Default UK SAC's/MPA's/MCZ's

    Hi guys just been alerted to this by Angus MacLeod skipper of the Aquarius CY34

    Quote Originally Posted by Angus MacLeod
    Davie

    We would be grateful if you could provide a link form this site to our online petition. An introduction on the site gives a back ground on our on-going campaign.

    The e-petition will compliment the 380 signatures gathered on paper in a three hour period on Castlbay pier during the blessing of the fleet in July. So far these petitions have been largely supported locally but with the Marine bill looming I feel that it is important for the whole industry to stand against designations that would have damaging economic effects on UK & EU coastal communities.

    As the West Highland Free Press recently wrote, "The people of Barra are to be congratulated on their campaign of resistance. If it proves successful, he rest of this region will owe them a debt of gratitude for demonstrating to Scottish National Heritage that they cannot ride roughshod over the people of the North-West Highlands & Islands.

    http://www.petition.fm/petitions/barrasac

    Angus MacLeod
    Skipper Aquarius CY34

  2. #2
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    Default

    two comments on there just sum them up perfectly

    "SNH - see no humans"
    "creating non-jobs for non-locals"

    Bloody snh have got far to much clout, basts-ds wont be happy till the only thing left in the highlands is feckin seals and incomers

  3. #3

    Default South Hebrides Marine pSAC

    Marcus

    Thank you for your support.

    Through out this whole process SNH have mis represented the views of the communities and in 2000 lied that there was no opposition to the SOB designation. This time round they refused to give us data relating to both pSAC's under the freedom of information stating it was " manifestly unreasonably" to provide us with the information and only with the intervention of the minister were we provided with copies of 450 files but continue to with-hold 9 documents. At and open meeting in October they refused to openly discuss the subject with over 100 locals from the main communities concerned Barra, Eriskay & Vatersay as well as reps from 3 community councils, fishing associations, fish processors, local development company and many others.

    As a mainly Government funded organisation SNH also fund the likes of Scottish environmental link and RSPB to name but a few, it would appear that this is a serious mis-spend of Scottish Govenrments public money.

    If you have not yet had enough of so called green orgs, environmental damaging practices, could I suggest a read of a book by, Ian Mitchell, Isles to the west.

    Angus

  4. #4
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    Default North-west fishers appeal for immediate action against SAC designations

    http://www.fishnewseu.com/latest-new...ignations.html

    Quote Originally Posted by fishnewseu
    Tuesday, 27 April 2010 11:48

    THE office bearers of Mallaig & North West Fishermen's Association have issued an appeal for action by the Scottish Government on the designation of marine Special Areas of Conservation (SACs).

    In an open letter John Hermse (Secretary) and John Macalister (Chairman) of the MNWFA say they fully support Angus MacNeil’s commitment to fight ‘for an end to the ludicrous Common Fisheries Policy’, although commenting that this comes last in the recently published list of election pledges by the Na h-Eileanan an Iar (Western Isles) MP.

    They go on to say: “I doubt if a Scottish fishermen’s organisation could argue with this fine aspiration but the reality is that we have to deal with the here and now. That means dealing with the immediate and local threat of having two large areas of water around Barra, Eriskay and South Uist designated as marine Special Areas of Conservation, with the inevitable prospect of restrictions on local fishing effort and knock-on effect to the local economy.

    “This threat is something that the Scottish Government and Mr MacNeil have the power to do something about right now. Effective action does not require the election of new SNP MPs; nor does it require the dismantling of a massive EU-wide administrative system and industry regulation. All it requires is the will of the existing Scottish Government.

    “Mr MacNeil, as he has shown over other issues in this campaign, can write to the appropriate Scottish Government minister, publicly requesting direct intervention and discussion with affected groups on the issue, in this case regarding the Sound of Barra and Mingulay marine SACs. Why has he not yet done so when he knows that local fishermen in his constituency are absolutely opposed to these designations?

    “One does not need to bring the CFP to “an end” in order to instruct Scottish Natural Heritage to find alternative sites or solutions to shortfalls in EU quotas for common seals, reefs and sandbanks. That can be dealt with right now by the Scottish Government.

    “Having previously been told by SNH that it couldn’t afford to survey for alternative SAC sites, local fishermen have now to tolerate the sight of a Scottish Government vessel carrying out at least the 7th survey since 2002 of the waters east of Mingulay which are threatened with designation. SNH are also in the process of inviting tenders for at least three costly surveys in West Coast inshore waters for impending Marine Protected Areas (MPA's). Obviously there is money available somewhere!

    “With respect to Mr MacNeil’s views, we look to the current Scottish Government to use its existing powers to manage the country for the benefit of local people. Surely that is the style of government the SNP should be demonstrating before it asks for the return of even more powers from the EU?” Hermse and Macalister conclude.

  5. #5
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    Default Widespread opposition in Western Isles to designation of Barra and East Mingulay SACs

    http://www.fishnewseu.com/latest-new...ulay-sacs.html

    Quote Originally Posted by fishnewseu
    Tuesday, 12 October 2010 10:07

    A GROUP called Southern Hebrides Against Marine Environmental Designations (SHAMED) has written to the Scottish Government to express its opposition to the proposed designation of sites around Barra and East Mingulay as marine Special Areas of Conservation (SAC) under the 1992 EC Habitats Directive.

    In a letter to Cabinet Secretary, Richard Lochhead, the chairmen of SHAMED, Angus Macleod said: “We represent a cross-section of interests within the communities of South Uist, Eriskay, Barra and Vatersay as well as the wider fishing interests in the Western Isles and West Coast. Our aim is to remove an existing proposed SAC (Sound of Barra) and to stop the creation of two new massive European SACs (Sound of Barra and East Mingulay) at the very heart of this fragile community.

    “We believe our survival depends on local democratic management of the resources in this area. This hard-won right, which has been enhanced in recent years by our determined effort to grasp every opportunity to develop local businesses and services, would be swept away if the designations were to be imposed by the Scottish Government.

    “We have already experienced the adverse effects of having a European SPA for birds on Barra within less than 10 years of the site being classified. Protection of various species of birds is causing havoc throughout the islands. We are also aware of bans on fishing activity within existing marine SACs throughout the UK.

    “For ten years now there has been opposition to Scottish Natural Heritage’s (SNH) recommendations to create SAC’s here. During that time, we have gained insight into the workings of SNH and the Joint Nature Conservation Committee (JNCC). We have experienced, at first hand, SNH’s treatment of the people who live and work in places they see as being of “high conservation value”.

    “Our concerns as regards SNH and the JNCC are now such that we intend, backed by the signatures of hundreds of people, to petition the Scottish Parliament to investigate due process used by SNH to date. We detailed some of these concerns at a meeting with Alastair Allan, MSP, held on Barra on 16th August 2010. Indeed, Dr Allan received a specific request from Councillor Donald Manford for an enquiry into the designation methodology employed by SNH thus far. We are now formally asking you what progress has been made with this request?

    “From what we can see of the selection and designation process being employed by the JNCC and SNH, there is no doubt that they are refusing to consider alternatives and are selecting and disseminating information in a way that is open to question.

    “Therefore we would very much welcome the opportunity to meet and discuss some of our experiences with you and to have the opportunity to put forward our own proposals, an opportunity which the standard selection and designation process does not provide.”

  6. #6
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    Default East Mingulay SAC approved by Scottish Government

    http://www.fishnewseu.com/latest-new...overnment.html

    Quote Originally Posted by fishnewseu
    Monday, 01 November 2010 11:36

    THE Scottish Government has approved the case for a Special Area of Conservation (SAC) at East Mingulay, while vulnerable Western Isles seal populations are to be better protected.

    Creating a SAC at East Mingulay will protect a very rare coral reef found in the area, as well as safeguarding other species. Meanwhile, in response to the widespread declines in the common seal population, a new Seal Conservation Area is to be created across the whole of the Western Isles. The existing protection measures – for Orkney, Shetland, the Moray Firth, and Firth of Tay – are also to be continued.

    The impetus behind SACs is set in European legislation. The EU requires that member states complete the ‘Natura 2000’ ecological network, of which SACs are an integral part. The Scottish Government is not convinced that an adequate scientific case had yet been made for a second SAC in the Sound of Barra and will therefore take forward further research into the populations of common seals in the Western Isles.

    Roseanna Cunningham, Minister for Environment, said: “Following the scientific case put forward to create a Special Area of Conservation at East Mingulay, I can announce this has been given approval and will now be consulted on by Scottish Natural Heritage. This will help protect the rare cold water corals as well safeguarding many other species.

    “Scotland’s seals form a unique part of our marine environment and the decline in common seal numbers in recent years is very worrying. That’s why we have taken action, using the provisions under the new Marine Scotland Act, to create Seal Conservation Areas. Using these provisions to cover the whole of the Western Isles will bring new protection for these seals.

    “An investigation to explore the reasons for common seal population decline in the Western Isles will be taken forward, demonstrating the Scottish Government’s ongoing commitment to protecting our seals. Following the completion of this research a decision on the Sound of Barra SAC proposal will be made.”

    The designations of the Sound of Barra and East Mingulay as SACs have been bitterly opposed by many local residents. As recently as 12th October, a group called SHAMED (Southern Hebrides Against Marine Environmental Designations) wrote to the Scottish Government saying: “We believe our survival depends on local democratic management of the resources in this area. This hard-won right, which has been enhanced in recent years by our determined effort to grasp every opportunity to develop local businesses and services, would be swept away if the designations were to be imposed by the Scottish Government.”

    East Mingulay is in the only known location inside UK territorial waters to feature the cold water coral Lophelia pertusa. Scientific studies have identified at least 400 species living within the reef complex. The coral is also found at Darwin Mounds (beyond territorial waters), to the north west of Scotland.

  7. #7
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    Default “Devastating” decision will hit fishermen and development, say grouping

    http://www.fishnewseu.com/latest-new...-grouping.html

    Quote Originally Posted by fishnewseu
    Tuesday, 02 November 2010 11:20

    A GROUPING “appalled” at a decision to designate a new Special Area of Conservation (SAC) have demanded a meeting with Scottish Fisheries Minister Richard Lochhead.

    SHAMED – Southern Hebrides Against Marine Environmental Designations – say the Scottish Government decision to name an area of sea East of Mingulay as an SAC will have a devastating impact on fishermen who are already some of the most responsible and ecologically aware in the world.

    The grouping say that one of the aims of the EC Habitats Directive of 1992, from which all SACs derive, is to support sustainable development within member EU countries. The Scottish Government must now, they add, explain how that European aim is borne out by its decision in this Scottish case.

    SHAMED claim that Scottish Natural Heritage (SNH) has an “appalling” record of destruction of local fishing industries and any SAC designation will have a devastating impact on the existing fishing activity in the area, which is carried out not by large international vessels but by small boats manned by islanders and fishermen from other West Coast communities.

    They add: “These fishermen are among the most ecologically aware and concerned of fisherman anywhere in the world, and were practising responsible fishing with concern for stocks and the marine environment long before this became fashionable.

    “The fact that these fishermen depend on the sheltered waters to the East of the islands seems to have been ignored by the Scottish Government when directing Scottish Natural Heritage to propose SACs containing reef habitat.

    “SAC designation will be equally detrimental to potential future renewable energy and related development in adjacent areas. Designations thus strike a body blow not only against the largest local source of local employment but also robs our communities of the opportunity to develop what is the largest potential source of employment and development for generations.

    “This designation comes after a two-year campaign against additional conservation designations in the area, which has overwhelming local support. The government has consistently and repeatedly refused to respond to our questions, and has yet to provide an answer to the question of what if any legal requirement there is to make this designation. Scottish Natural Heritage has refused to engage with the communities in a straightforward fashion, and its representatives have lied to members of the community on more than one occasion. It is difficult to understand why under an SNP Government - some of whose members helped us to oppose the previous Scottish Executive’s conservation proposals for the Sound of Barra in June 2000, and that our elected members of parliament have failed to prevent the continuing onslaught of designations on our community, who in their hundreds put names on a petition against these sites.”

    SHAMED add that SNH report in their advice to government (Selection of East Mingulay to Represent Reefs in the Western Isles, p. 12; 6th Aug 2009) that the UK has approximately 7.8 million hectares of reef habitat. The proposed Mingulay SAC contains 12,000 hectares but within that only 2,600 hectares of reef have been plotted. These 2,600 hectares of reef habitat represent a mere .03% of the total UK resource. SHAMED believes that the effect of the restrictions which SAC status will impose on the community and local economy will be proportionately far greater than any contribution this site will ever make to fulfilling the UK’s environmental EU quotas.

    “SNH are telling the general public and ministers that the coral found in waters off Mingulay are unique to UK inshore waters. In fact, it has been established in recent years that EU law - something on which SNH is normally very keen - does not distinguish between inshore and offshore waters when expecting member states to protect habitats within their jurisdiction. It is incredible, therefore, that SNH is permitted to express itself in these misleading terms.

    “At a time of severe public spending cuts imposed by the government in London, we find it astonishing that the Scottish government is proposing to spend substantial public funds, first on an expensive and meaningless public consultation, and then on an ongoing basis in establishing and administering the SAC, the effect of which will be the destruction of a thriving local fishing industry and the prevention of development of promising alternative energy industries. This is a case of bureaucracy gone mad married to value destruction, with complete disregard to both the concerns and the well being of communities which have lived in harmony with the local environment for hundreds of years.

    “We have requested a meeting with Richard Lochhead, the Cabinet Minister for Rural Affairs and Environment. We hope that he has the courtesy and courage to engage with us directly. Whether or not that happens, the Scottish government and the SNH should be aware that we will not stand idly by and permit the destruction of our communities by an act of thoughtless bureaucratic diktat. We will continue to oppose this designation and similar proposals for the Sound of Barra with every means at our disposal.”

  8. #8
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    Default East Mingulay SAC consultation begins

    http://www.fishnewseu.com/latest-new...on-begins.html

    Quote Originally Posted by fishnewseu
    Friday, 19 November 2010 11:19

    A CONSULTATION exercise started this week on a proposal to designate a marine area as a Special Area of Conservation (SAC) off the west coast of Scotland.

    The Scottish Government has approved the case for the East Mingulay SAC to the west of Scotland, located around 13 kilometres east of Mingulay and has asked Scottish Natural Heritage (SNH) to carry out the consultation, which is a chance for people to comment on the scientific justification for designation of East Mingulay. SNH will also collate any comments on social and economic aspects. The consultation is expected to last 14 weeks.

    Details of the proposed SAC are available on SNH's website, and in paper form from SNH's office in Stilligarry, South Uist. Local staff will be available to discuss the proposals during the consultation period. They will gather responses from a variety of sources including letters and emails and report the findings to Ministers following the consultation.

    The East Mingulay reefs are of special importance due to the coldwater coral Lophelia pertusa found there. This is the only known example of coldwater coral reef in territorial waters i.e. within the 12 nautical mile (nm) limit. In addition a new species of sponge, Cliona caledoniae, was identified in 2009. There are four sites identified with this type of reef habitat in offshore waters - from 12 to 200nm from the coast - around the UK: Darwin Mounds SAC; North-West Rockall SAC; Hatton Bank (dSAC): and East Rockall.

    David Maclennan, the SNH Western Isles manager, confirmed: "The consultation is a real chance for people to have their say on the proposals and we are keen that as many folk as possible respond. We are committed to this process and we want to know peoples' feelings on the environmental and economic issues.

    "We are aware of concern in some areas, and we would urge those who may have opposing views to come forward. For instance, concern has been expressed about the potential impact of an SAC on fishing interests. Information from the Vessel Monitoring System (VMS) fitted to fishing vessels over 15m shows that they operate mostly outside the proposed boundary.

    "We would, however, like to use the consultation to discuss ongoing fishing activities with operators of smaller vessels so that we have a clear understanding of the level of activity taking place and how that relates to the interests of the site. All responses will be collated and provided to the Scottish Government for their final decision."

    East Mingulay is also recognised as a habitat with coral reefs which in turn helps support a range of animal and plant species.

  9. #9
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    Default Marine Regions Consultation Launched

    http://www.fishupdate.com/news/fulls..._LAUNCHED.html

    Quote Originally Posted by fishupdate
    Public views are being sought on how to define Scottish Marine Regions within the Scottish Government's Marine Act.

    A public consultation was launched today by the Scottish Cabinet Secretary for Rural Affairs and the Environment, Richard Lochhead. The designation of Scottish Marine Regions is a key element of the implementation of the Marine (Scotland) Act, he said.

    "This consultation seeks to consider the best way to define these regions, which are so important to the Marine (Scotland) Act," Mr Lochhead said. "The aim is to allow marine decision making to take place at local levels, where the impact can be fully and properly assessed.

    "Scotland's seas are home to some of the world's most spectacular wildlife and habitats and have the potential to power our nation through wind and wave and create tens of thousands of new jobs.

    "Scottish Marine Regions will help to deliver the mechanism to protect important marine habitats and species and to be more joined up with our crucial fisheries industry.

    "Improved planning and licensing will support the development of renewable marine energy. We owe it to future generations to ensure our seas are managed and harvested sustainably. Economic growth is vital, but it should be balanced with protection for our stunning marine environment."

    Consultees are being asked to consider:
    * Three options for defining the marine region boundaries. These are physical characteristics of Firths and Islands; physical characteristics with further divisions in the west coast and modification of boundaries in the east coast to address the large size of some of the regions; and existing administrative models of the Area Advisory Groups or Inshore Fisheries Groups.
    * The seaward limit of the regions of 3nm or 6nm from baseline, and, for those west coast regions with large amounts of internal seas whether the seaward boundary should be measured from mean high water spring tides.

    The options presented would result in 10-12 Scottish Marine Regions. The consultation will run until the end of February, after which responses will be analysed.

    The consultation can be accessed online at http://scotland.gov.uk/Topics/marine...l/Consultation

  10. #10
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    Default Scottish Government launches marine regions consultation

    http://www.fishnewseu.com/latest-new...sultation.html

    Quote Originally Posted by fishnewseu
    Wednesday, 24 November 2010 11:52

    PUBLIC views are being sought on how to define Scottish Marine Regions within the Scottish Government's Marine Act.

    A public consultation was launched yesterday by the Scottish Cabinet Secretary for Rural Affairs and the Environment, Richard Lochhead. The designation of Scottish Marine Regions is a key element of the implementation of the Marine (Scotland) Act, he said.

    "This consultation seeks to consider the best way to define these regions, which are so important to the Marine (Scotland) Act," Mr Lochhead said. "The aim is to allow marine decision making to take place at local levels, where the impact can be fully and properly assessed.

    "Scotland's seas are home to some of the world's most spectacular wildlife and habitats and have the potential to power our nation through wind and wave and create tens of thousands of new jobs.

    "Scottish Marine Regions will help to deliver the mechanism to protect important marine habitats and species and to be more joined up with our crucial fisheries industry.

    "Improved planning and licensing will support the development of renewable marine energy. We owe it to future generations to ensure our seas are managed and harvested sustainably. Economic growth is vital, but it should be balanced with protection for our stunning marine environment."

    Consultees are being asked to consider:

    * Three options for defining the marine region boundaries. These are physical characteristics of Firths and Islands; physical characteristics with further divisions in the west coast and modification of boundaries in the east coast to address the large size of some of the regions; and existing administrative models of the Area Advisory Groups or Inshore Fisheries Groups.
    * The seaward limit of the regions of 3nm or 6nm from baseline, and, for those west coast regions with large amounts of internal seas whether the seaward boundary should be measured from mean high water spring tides.

    The options presented would result in 10-12 Scottish Marine Regions. The consultation will run until the end of February, after which responses will be analysed.
    The consultation can be accessed online at http://scotland.gov.uk/Topics/marine...l/Consultation

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