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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

In December, the Marine Group published new figures estimating that 103,000 tonnes of plastic packaging will have been recycled this Christmas. The Group welcomed Defra’s Waste & Resource Strategy published in December but called for more ambition. Specifically, the Groups want to see a more urgent timescale in place for the introduction of a Deposit Return Scheme and cross Government support for implementation. In November, the Group also responded to the Government consultation on banning the production and sale of plastic straws, cotton buds and drinks stirrers.

In October, despite developing a briefing setting out the Groups key asks on eliminating single-use plastics for the Treasury, Defra and MPs in advance, the Group was disappointed with the measures outlined in the Budget.This was made clear in a Link press release, which received coverage in a number of news outlets including The Guardian, The Sun, The Daily Mail and the Ecologist.

The Group continues to attend the EU Exit Marine Stakeholder Group meetings, convened by Defra. The Group is working with Defra and members of the Seabed Users Development Group to ensure the Statutory Instruments relating to the marine environment are transposed effectively. The Group is also discussing future metrics and implementation of the 25 Year Environment Plan.

The Group are continuing to support Greener UK in their work on the fisheries bill and are also discussing ways to progress work on Marine Conservation Zones, having responded to a consultation on the third tranche of MCZs in July.

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

Last updated: 2 January 2019

Useful links

Link's Marine Charter

23 new Marine Conservation Zones designated in 2016 - is this enough?