Marine Bill - Conservation and Profitability
written by Monty Halls (Senior)
It was very pleasing to hear that the Marine Bill is to be brought onto 'the Statute Books' shortly. I believe that this will prove to be one of the most enlightened pieces of legislation of the century.
Conservation. The improvement of the health of marine life surrounding Lundy Island is testimony to the effectiveness of the proposed marine Conservation Protection Areas. With the careful management of up to 20% of UK waters (now being the subject of these 'CPA's'), the future level and sustainabiliy of UK commercial fishing should become much more certain. The maintenance of UK marine biodiversity also benefits. The areas will offer the potential for marine biological research.
Profitability. It will be very interesting to monitor the management and impact of the proposed Carbon Capture and Storage (CCS) aspect of the Marine Bill. Not only will the depleted coal, oil, gas and salt aquifers offer storage to the UK's carbon dioxide emissions, but there may well be sufficient storage volume to offer storage facilities to other CCS nations. Whilst expensive to set up these CCS systems, the longer-term profitability looks very promising. Not only that, but future generations will benefit from another fuel source once these storage areas have 'mineralised'.
If all this materialises, we should be able to feel a level of pride in effective marine 'stewardship'.