Miserable Failure Of CFP Must Not Be Emulated

SNP President and Euro MP Ian Hudghton warned that a proposed EU marine environment directive must not emulate the disastrous failure of the Common Fisheries Policy. Speaking in a key debate at the European Parliament in Strasbourg Mr. Hudghton said:

"The EU has 68,000 km. of coastline - Scotland has 11,000 km.

"Almost 50% of the EU population lives within 50 km. of the sea - in Scotland 70% live within 10 km.

"Clearly it is in Scotland's long term interest to protect the marine environment, to conserve our wealth of marine resources for the long term.

"Scotland has oil and gas reserves for at least another 30 years, therefore I support amendments which seek to ensure that oil and gas extraction will continue to benefit the Scottish economy.

"I cannot support Committee amendment 8 as drafted, because it seeks to link a marine strategy to 'the principles of the Common Fisheries Policy'. The CFP has been a miserable failure and the last thing I want to see is a new strategy linked to such a fatally flawed set of principles.

"The idea that member states should determine what good environmental status is, in the waters under their jurisdiction, and should work with their neighbours in logical marine regions makes sense. The logic in that proposal should be applied to fisheries management too, i.e. return jurisdiction to member states so that the countries around the North Sea for example - those who have most to gain from successful conservations - will have real responsibility and real incentive to succeed in implementing any marine environment strategy."

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