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Proposals for the NSRAC’s engagement with offshore MPAs for protection of biodiversity PowerPoint Presentation
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Proposals for the NSRAC’s engagement with offshore MPAs for protection of biodiversity

Proposals for the NSRAC’s engagement with offshore MPAs for protection of biodiversity

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Proposals for the NSRAC’s engagement with offshore MPAs for protection of biodiversity

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Presentation Transcript

  1. Proposals for the NSRAC’s engagement with offshore MPAs for protection of biodiversity

  2. Perceptions/response of the industry The sector: • Has only recently begun to consider the fisheries management implications of Natura 2000 and other MPAs (German EMPAS study a big step forward in addressing this) • Often presumes that fishing will be excluded rather than managed • Is also concerned about effort displacement • Is uncertain about where socio-economic considerations apply in the process

  3. In 2005, the North East Atlantic Fisheries Commission (NEAFC) requested ICES to: “provide information on the distribution of cold-water corals on the Western slopes of the Rockall Bank to indicate appropriate boundaries of any closure of areas where cold-water corals are affected by fishing activities” [Slides courtesy of Mark Tasker, ICES WGDEC]

  4. Source 1. Scientific and other records

  5. Source 2: Fishers’ knowledge

  6. Source 3: Satellite tracking information

  7. Two criteria applied to inform closure boundaries: • Areas containing recorded coral concentrations where there was no or low fishing activity • Areas containing recorded coral concentrations where fishing activity was high

  8. What happened next? ICES gave NEAFC advice in Sept 2005 NEAFC met in November 2005 but took no decision NEAFC met again in November 2006 and decided to close part of Rockall Bank (implemented in both EU and NEAFC), but SW Rockall not yet closed awaiting consideration of further evidence

  9. Lessons for fishing sector • Rockall shows that providing VMS and fishers’ knowledge can assist coexistence of fishing and nature conservation goals • E.g. VMS may reveal an unfished area and this will probably have more intact habitat than a heavily fished one • Have to start with science: NB socio-economic factors are not allowed to influence boundary-setting and conservation objectives of Natura 2000 sites, only their management

  10. How else does this relate to Natura 2000? • North Sea Member States are in the process of proposing offshore sites (SACs under the Habitats Directive) to the Commission • The initial responsibility for consulting stakeholders falls on the MS; e.g in the UK, Defra has requested the JNCC to develop a consultation plan for engaging with the RACs etc this year

  11. The RACs

  12. Source: Defra 15 March 2007

  13. Natura 2000 consultation process (cont…) • Having received the proposed sites, the Commission is required to take action, without delay, within the CFP to protect the relevant areas • Note the ‘without delay’; e.g. in response to the Irish request for closures, the Commission intend proposing an amendment to the TAC & Quota Reg for 2007 to enable temporary protection measures until the future Reg on tech measures can make such measures permanent • All this means that the Commission needs to consult the RACs for their advice as early as possible

  14. Non-Paper on Technical Measures for the NE Atlantic & North Sea: Preparing a new proposal to replace Council Reg 850/98 “The discussion and implementation of these protected areas should be subject to consultation with the RACs. Given that these areas will be proposed individually by MSs, probably over a long period, with potential risk of very different criteria and objectives, it seems desirable that a debate on the protection of marine habitats be held in the context of the future technical measures regulation. Such a debate could define general criteria on the type of marine habitat necessary to protect, and on the the type of fishing activities that would need to be banned or restricted in these areas. This would allow a more consistent approach to the implementation of the Habitats Directive.”

  15. Tasks for the RACs (joint NSRAC/NWWRAC workshop?) • Be proactive: inform DG Fish, DG Env, OSPAR and Member States how RACs want to be consulted on offshore MPAs (contacts, timing, etc). [As a result of the Irish site proposals, the NWWRAC has already done this.] • Knowing the sites proposed, explore how fishers’ knowledge might assist coexistence of fishing opportuntities & site protection • Identify common management measures for different habitat types of MPA (e.g. trawling might be stopped over coral but not longlining) [also, without common standards, one MS might discriminate against another]

  16. Thank You!