Oceans and seas cover 70% of the world’s surface and are of critical importance economically, environmentally and socially. As an island nation, the UK coasts around 7500 miles of coast line and a wealth of marine biodiversity. The marine environment around England is extremely rich and diverse. England has some of the finest marine wildlife in Europe. England’s seas contain amazing underwater landscapes and over 10,000 species, including many of national and European importance. For example, England has more underwater chalk reefs than anywhere else in Europe. We have some surprising species such as sea fans, solitary corals, sea horses, sharks and dolphins as well as many types of fish and invertebrates.
The seas around England contain an important part of our wildlife. Some 50% of the variety of our species is found in the sea, in an area that is three times the land area.
The geology of the seabed around England is rich and varied, ranging from rocky granite reefs to mobile sandbanks. It is this variety of seabed type, coupled with the influence of colder Arctic and warmer Mediterranean waters around our shores, those results in the diverse range of marine species and habitats in our seas.
In this project will focus on looking into:
How climate change affect the potential production for fisheries resources, and how it will affect in the future
compared to past and present scenarios, in the absence of utilization
will estimate the added liability of these effects on national and regional economies in marine-dependent areas and on specific elements of marine system at different scales
Future vulnerabilities of national economies (and globally) to determine the consequences of predicted marine scenarios, including affection of marine policies on all economic, environmental and social platforms
Task 1: Explain why the topic you have chosen is frequently on the political agenda, stating why the issue is so controversial.
The environment, as general topic, has been on the political agenda since the late 1960s. A human nature relationship connects to extraordinary diverse set of issues covered by environmental politics, which include marine conservation. The emergence of conservation and nature protection groups in the latter part of the nineteenth and the early twentieth countries, was the first signal of concern about environmental issues on political agenda, reflecting growing interest in the protection of wild life and natural resources.
The marine environment is increasingly high up the policy and political agenda now – and rightly so. The marine environment is so important on a political agenda because it is critical important part of our economic, environmental and social existence. It provides a wide variety of goods and services.
Our seas supply us with many goods and services including:
Climate regulation. Our oceans regulate our climate by redistributing heat around the world. Evaporation from the oceans forms the moisture that results in rain on land. The plankton in their uppermost layers helps stimulate cloud formation due to the chemicals they naturally emit. This plays a crucial role in temperature regulation of our planet.
Food sources. The oceans provide food for hundreds of millions of people worldwide.
Storing carbon. Oceans act as the largest store of carbon on the planet, drawing carbon dioxide from the atmosphere and trapping it.
Energy. We obtain oil and gas from under the sea bed. Offshore wind farms also provide a source of renewable energy, and waves and tides provide a further potential resource.
Building materials. We use marine aggregates such as sand and gravels as building materials.
Transport. The marine environment also links us to the rest of the world. In 2007 24.8 million passengers took international journeys by ship and UK ports handled 582 million tonnes (Mt) of freight traffic.
Recreation. Our seas and coasts provide a place for a wide variety of leisure activities from sailing and scuba diving to swimming and surfing. In 2007, we took over 20 million trips to the seaside in England.
Because our seas are wide supplier in many different ways its important to take care of such a source. That’s why is so ‘hot’ topic on political agenda to save it, as it isn’t in the best its form at the moment and continues to come under pressure from man, as we increasingly make use of its goods and services it provides. (http://www.naturalengland.org.uk/ourwork/marine/default.aspx)
Task 2: Examine selective aspects of UK Government’s Environmental policy from 1970, and state how environmental policy impacts on say housing or transportation.
England’s marine environment is not as well understood or protected as the terrestrial environment. It requires particular attention and focus to develop the evidence, protection, sustainable use, understanding and appreciation of our seascapes and marine biodiversity.
England’s seas are protected and managed in a number of ways:
Legislation and policy
The marine environment is protected through a variety of national and international legislation and policies. Divided in two levels European and national.
Site protection is afforded though a number of designations. Together these will form a network of Marine Protected Areas – Special Areas of Conservation (SACs) under the Habitats Directive, Special Protection Areas for birds (under the Birds Directive), SSSIs which occasionally cover sub-tidal areas and in future Marine Conservation Zones under the Marine Bill.
Management of activities
Activities in the marine environment are regulated by a licensing regime and within European marine sites by the Habitats Regulations. Natural England advises developers and regulators on the environmental impact of activities. The Marine and Coastal Access Bill will include provisions for establishing a system of marine planning, a new Marine Protected Area designation, and fisheries management, marine licensing and establishing a new marine management organisation.
England Biodiversity Strategy
Natural England leads on the marine workstream of the England Biodiversity Strategy, which is responsible for ensuring delivering the marine Biodiversity Action Plans.
Through Marine Programme, DEFRA is working to improve the state of the UK’s marine environment and fisheries and achieve our vision for clean, healthy, safe, productive and biologically diverse oceans and seas.
The UK has an important sea fish industry with one of the largest fishing fleets and fish processing industries in Europe. Freshwater fisheries is also a major leisure industry in our rural areas. In the UK, Defra is the lead department for fisheries and plays a major role in EU and international negotiations, as well as in managing and implementing fisheries policy.
Fish stocks are national and international resources that have to be husbanded sustainably. If we lose them from over-fishing, they may take many years to regenerate. We also have to protect all marine species from sea pollution which could wreck their ecology.
Figure 5 – Flow chart of capture (wild) and farmed fisheries products from aquatic primary production. Numbers refer to 1997 data and are in megatons (million metric tons) of fish. Thicker lines refer to direct flows of aquatic primary production through capture fisheries and aquaculture to humans. Thin lines refer to indirect and minor flows. Red lines indicate negative feedbacks on the aquatic production base. (Modified from Naylor et al. 2000)
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Figure – Ecological links between intensive fish and shrimp aquaculture and capture fisheries. Thick blue lines refer to main flows from aquatic production base through fisheries and aquaculture to human consumption of seafood. Thin blue lines refer to other inputs needed for production (e.g., agro feed, fish meal, seed stock, etc.). Hatched red lines indicate negative feedbacks. (Modified from Naylor et al. 2000)
This approach removes doubts as to what exploitation regulations will be put into practice in coming decades, and focuses on the added impacts that climate change is likely to cause, and on the subsequent additional risks and vulnerabilities to human societies.
Legislation restricts fishermen in what and where they can fish. The most significant legislation with respect to fisheries s the European Union Common Fisheries Policy (CFP) but legislation on fisheries matters comes from three sources:
The Department for Environment , Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA), or Scottish Executive (SEERAD) in Scotland
Sea Fisheries Committees for local legislation in England and Wales#
There are around 280 ports, harbours and creeks around the UK where fish is landed, the major fishing ports in the UK in terms of value of fish landed are:
Peterhead – chiefly haddock, cod, monkfish, mackerel, nephrops, herring
Lochinver – blue ling, ling, nepherops
Fraserburgh – haddock, herring, mackerel, nephrops.
Sources: Statistics of fish landings into ports in England, Wales and Northern Ireland by port 2001, Defra website.
UK Seafood Industry Annual Statistics 2001, Sea fish.
Scottish Fishery Harbour Background Study, Sea fish Policy and Economic Unit.
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