Our team has had many queries and rants about Marine Conservation Zones. So having received this statement from the Welsh Government, it was sent around all our Best Of Welsh & Borders producers. But then thought it would be in everyone’s interest if it was posted in full.
If any of you can get to the meetings, please go and have your say, the dates are shown below. But before any of you come back to me and say will not be worth it because ‘they’ will not listen – rubbish, just please go and make them!!!!!!
The Welsh Government is holding a series of public events and meetings to gather views and information on the options for highly protected areas within Welsh seas. Environment Minister, John Griffiths launched a consultation in April that set out 10 potential sites as options for highly protected, Marine Conservation Zones (MCZs).
The Welsh Government is proposing the selection of a maximum of three or four sites which would be left to function as naturally as possible. This is to improve ecosystem recovery and resilience in Welsh seas and to learn more about the ways that marine ecosystems function.
The Government is keen to emphasise that it is still at the very early stages of this process. It wants to learn a lot more about the sites and the potential effects of designation on local communities and their local economy’s before making any decisions on the selected sites or the boundaries. The current consultation is the first of a three stage consultation process.
Environment Minister, John Griffiths said: “This first stage in the consultation process is about gathering as much information as we can about the site options. That is why we are keen to encourage input and views from the public and from all groups with an interest, especially fishermen, environment groups and tourism and leisure operators. We will be holding a number of meetings with interested groups and organisations over the period of the consultation so that we can engage directly with them.
We really are at a very early stage of this process and want to gather as much information and intelligence as possible to inform this work. No decisions have been made as yet and I would urge anyone with an interest to get involved and share their views. “
A public meeting is being held between 9.30am and 8pm on Wednesday 27 June at Merlin Theatre, Pembrokeshire College, Haverfordwest, SA61 1SZ . A meeting is also being held between 9.30am and 8pm on Tuesday 3rd July at the Celtic Royal Hotel, Caernarfon, LL55 1AY. If you would like to attend either event please register on the Welsh Government website.The Welsh Government is also holding a number of events for both recreational and commercial fisherman and would urge interested parties to come along and feed into the process. The consultation will run until 31 July 2012. You can access the full consultation and a Q&A document on the Welsh Government website.
I couldn’t even hazzard a guess as to how much of ‘our’ money the Welsh Government have pout into the fishing industry. The feedback I’m getting from our fishing guys is that much of this is wasted and let me put this politely, has not been put to best use. I’m being told that the Welsh Government are happliy going along and destroying and industry which we were once very proud of. There are many family businesses are involved in our fishing industry and it’s about time wag got behind these guys and gave them some pratical help, before we have no Welsh fish left. The Government firstlly need to listen to fishermen, rather than consult with them when wag plans are already very nearly in place. Wag you must start with a blank sheet of paper and talk to the guys whose living you are in danger of destroying.
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