Northumberland MP Anne-Marie Trevelyan believes Fisheries Management Plans will boost county's fishing industry
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The MP for the Berwick-upon-Tweed constituency believes that the UK is introducing a system of fisheries management that draws on the best available science and the expertise of country’s fishermen to ensure fish stocks are healthy and sustainable long into the future.
This new system will be underpinned by Fisheries Management Plans, blueprints for how best to manage fish stocks. The first six have now been published – including bass, king scallops, crab and lobster.
These management plans, developed together with industry and anglers over 18 months, deliver commitments from the Fisheries Act 2020 and will be a combination of actions that can be taken now to protect stocks and longer-term approaches.
Ms Trevelyan said: “Northumberland’s fishermen, from our home harbours of Berwick, Seahouses, Amble and beyond, have shaped our coastal community for centuries, so I’m delighted the Government is backing British fishing with a new package of measures.
“Including £45.6million of funding awards, new sustainability plans following hundreds of hours of discussions with the fishing sector and new consultations on more effective methods and approaches, we’re seizing our post-Brexit fishing freedoms in this clear departure from the Common Fisheries Policy (CFP).
“It’s especially welcome that, having already negotiated a significant uplift in quota shares following Brexit – worth over £100million in fishing opportunities this year alone – the Government’s new consultation on removing the 350kg annual finfish cap for small British vessels of 10 metres or under will be a particular boost, opening up more potential income for smaller businesses.”
There will also be a consultation launching the Government’s vision for remote electronic monitoring (REM) in English waters, setting out the proposed approach and next steps. REM systems include cameras, gear sensors and GPS units, and will ensure the management plans are supported by robust evidence and data.
Mike Cohen, chief executive of the National Federation of Fishermen’s Organisations, said: “Fisheries Management Plans represent a genuinely ambitious attempt to break away from the unsuccessful top-down impositions of the CFP and unite fishers, scientists and regulators in building something new and better.
“Fishermen’s livelihoods depend on healthy seas and sensible regulations. We welcome this opportunity to collaborate in shaping them.”