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UK Government Breaks Promise, Will Not Declare Protected Marine Areas As Promised [View All]

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hatrack Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Dec-04-11 07:15 PM
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UK Government Breaks Promise, Will Not Declare Protected Marine Areas As Promised
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The government has been accused of failing the environment after announcing delays to the creation of marine reserves. Conservation groups responded angrily to the announcement by environment minister Richard Benyon that the internationally agreed deadline for creating marine protected areas will be missed.

They accused the government of changing the rules at the last minute on how valuable marine habitats should be identified to protect them from destruction by vested interests. In his statement Mr Benyon said that the government wanted more evidence gathered before it made a decision on which locations, and the wildlife in them, should get priority for protection.

But conservation groups quickly pointed out that the government had, from the outset of the process of identifying where a network of marine reserves should be created, accepted there was a shortage of detailed scientific evidence of what lies beneath the waves and that suggestions should be assessed on the basis of the best available evidence.

The fear is that when there is a lack of evidence about a location, vested interests such as fishing, aggregates, oil & gas, and renewable energy schemes, will be allowed to exploit the area when in reality they harbour rare or valuable animal communities.

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