The government has announced the creation of 27 marine conservation zones (MCZs) around the English coasts, falling far short of the 127 reserves recommended by the science committee earlier this year.
MCZs aim to protect the marine environment of UK seas, particularly from destructive fishing practices, such as bottom trawling for fish and seafood.
Environment minister George Eustice said a consultation on two additional zones would start in 2015.
“We are doing more than ever to protect our marine environment. Almost a quarter of English inshore waters and 9% of UK waters will now be better protected. These marine conservation zones will safeguard a wide range of precious sea life from seahorses to oyster beds and our ambitions do not end there”, he said.
“Over 500 marine protected areas already exist around the UK. Together with MCZs these sites will help safeguard our rich marine environment and keep our seas sustainable, healthy and productive for future generations.”
The new network of zones covers 9,700 sq km, from the Aln estuary in the north-east to Beachy Head and Chesil Beach in the south and Padstow Bay and the Scilly Isles in the south-west.
Joan Edwards, head of the Wildlife Trusts’ Living Seas campaign said, “This is the first active step in what we believe to be the most important action government can take to address the shocking state of nature at sea.
She added, “It is vital for the appropriate management of the 27 designated sites to be implemented as soon as possible. We look forward to working with government to ensure this happens.
In April, a number of high-profile scientists criticised the government over proposals to reduce the number of proposed MCZs from 127 to 37, arguing that the policy would not be effective in this format.
In July, a comprehensive study of divers and anglers by a range of universities and marine groups found that the 127 MCZs would bring about significant economic benefits to the UK, as well as preserving wildlife and having a positive impact on local wellbeing.
Labour MP and former environment minister Ben Bradshaw, who sits on the science committee that recommended the vast MCZ network, said in April that future generations “will not forgive us” if the reserves did not come to fruition.
“The threat facing our seas is the biggest environmental challenge after climate change”, he added.
Like our Facebook Page
7 Benefits of Purchasing Sustainable Housing
Our Top Five Sustainable Home Renovations For 2023
6 Ways Eco-Friendly Photographers Can Take Beautiful Natural Pictures
Emerging Research In Seagrass Restoration: What Does The Future Hold?
Sustainable Bites: How To Make Your Diet Eco-Friendly
Coffee Farms & Cloud Forests: Colombia’s New Eco Initiatives
Electric Cars: Are They Worth The Switch?
Maximizing the Efficiency of Deliveries: Strategies for Sustainable Businesses
The Rise of Sustainable Cloud Computing
Navigating Towards A Greener Future: Sustainable Practices In Maritime
The Future of Sustainability In The Logistics Industry
Can Eco-Friendly Businesses Embrace VPNs to Bolster Cybersecurity?
Eight Different Eco-Friendly Developments in the Food Industry
UK Lags EU in Installing Heat Pumps to Slow Climate Change
5 Key Areas to Look at When It Comes to Business Sustainability
Addressing Leadership Challenges in Green Entrepreneurship
Holding Eco-Friendly Coins is Greener and More Profitable
Eco-Friendly Airlines Use Weather Models to Make Safer Flights
5 Reasons That Diamonds Can Be Excellent Green Investments
Why Should We Invest in Eco-Friendly Homes?
- Features3 months ago
What is the Eco-Friendliest Option to Wash Your Dishes?
- Environment7 months ago
6 Home Improvements You Can Make to Help the Environment
- Environment11 months ago
How to Ensure Your Home’s Eco-Friendly During Construction?
- Business10 months ago
The Pulp & Paper Industry is Reaching its Sustainability Goals