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Members' Business — S6M-08651 Beatrice Wishart: Highly Protected Marine Areas

Tuesday 02 May 2023 5:08 PM


That the Parliament recognises what it sees as the importance of Scotland’s fishing and aquaculture industries to coastal and island communities such as Shetland, as well as the wider Scottish economy; notes that the Scottish Government consultation on Highly Protected Marine Areas, a policy that forms part of the Bute House Agreement, closed on 17 April 2023; further notes that there are different views on Highly Protected Marine Areas and the contribution that they can make to protecting the marine environment; understands that many, including the Scottish Fishermen's Federation, have concerns about these areas and the impact that they will have on the fishing and aquaculture industries, as well as other activity of importance to coastal and island communities and the wider economy; notes the view that work should be done to ensure that all stakeholders are fully engaged with the process and that local community perspectives are taken into account; further notes stakeholders’ reported suggestions that scientific studies and pilot schemes should be considered and evaluated before any Highly Protected Marine Areas are formally designated; notes the view that this work should be carried out as soon as feasible and that any findings from studies or pilot schemes should be shared with all relevant stakeholders, and further notes the view that any work that directly affects coastal and island communities should always be undertaken in partnership with them to ensure that livelihoods are protected.

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