Lochhead looks to the future
Scotland’s Environment Secretary, Richard Lochhead, has called on the European Union to deliver the reforms needed to ensure a viable future for Scotland’s fisheries.
He has pledged to fight for Scotland's fisherman in Brussels and press Europe's leaders to grasp this once in a generation opportunity. He has also announced a £1 million fund to underpin a transition to more sustainable fishing under a reformed Common Fisheries Policy, including elimination of discards.
An additional £1 million funding will be made available over the next two years to help the industry develop more sustainable fishing practices, including development of new fishing gears that can reduce discards and research surveys that can inform fisheries management decisions. The funding will help Scotland tackle discards and take forward innovations to help bridge the transition to a reformed CFP.
The Fisheries Minister highlighted that now is the time for everyone in Scotland to stop looking back and dwelling on the hardships of years gone by, but instead to look to the future, to the huge opportunity that is now there to be grasped by Europe, and called on everyone to work together to ensure that opportunity is not missed.
Mr Lochhead said, “Both the CFP and Cod Recovery Plan are being reformed and we are putting in place a roadmap to discard free fisheries. Scotland demands that Europe grasps the opportunities offered by these reforms to deliver a better future for our fisheries. In Scotland we are playing our part and I look to Europe's leaders to play theirs.”
He also announced an additional £300,000 to double the number of scientific observers who can work with the industry to help provide the evidence for adopting new approaches to fishing.