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The Marine Working Group works to ensure better protection of marine wildlife and effective management of our seas by seeking the full implementation of the Marine and Coastal Access Act (MCAA) 2009. The Group also addresses the implementation of the EU Marine Strategy Framework Directive (MSFD) and marine spatial planning, and monitors the reform of the Common Fisheries Policy.

Chair: Chris Tuckett, Marine Conservation Society
Vice-chair: Alec Taylor, WWF-UK
Marine Policy and Campaigns Manager: Cecily Spelling, Link

Update from the Group

The Marine Group has been working with colleagues across Environment Links UK (ELUK) to respond to the consultation on revisions to the UK Marine Strategy. The UK Governments’ report showed they had failed to achieve their collective promises to deliver healthy seas having only achieved 4 of 15 indicators. In response, the Group have developed the “Seas Our Future” campaign, calling for a stronger, more ambitious UK Marine Strategy to turn the tide for our seas. To further their advocacy on the UK Marine Strategy over the summer, the Group developed a two page briefing outlining our priority actions to ensure our seas recover.

In July, the Group were invited to take part in a workshop with Defra and the Seabed User and Developer Group. This workshop focused on the future of the marine environment, what was working and what needed to change to recover our seas. The Group advocated for our key asks for the Marine Strategy to be taken forward and well re-sourced and are developing a briefing in line with this.

In May, Government announced the designation of 41 new Marine Conservation Zones to complete the third tranche of Marine Conservation Zones around the English coast. The Group are now beginning work to advocate for effective management of these sites and other Marine Protected Areas. They hope to work with Defra and Statutory Nature Conservation Bodies to define a "Whole Site Approach" to management. The Group will also seek to input to the new review on Highly Protected Marine Areas (HPMAs), chaired by Richard Benyon MP.

For further information, contact Cecily Spelling, Link’s Marine Policy and Campaigns Manager.

Last updated: 2 September 2019