Campaigner launches strong attack on Scottish Government over scallops –

Campaigner launches strong attack on Scottish Government over scallops Published:  08 November, 2010

CHARLES Clover, maker of The End Of The Line, the highly acclaimed and hard hitting film on the future of global fish stocks, has made a strongly worded attack on the Scottish Government over its stance on the decision to exclude 20 large Scottish scallop dredgers from waters around the Isle of Man.

He also accused the scallop boats from Scotland’s east coast of behaving in “cavalier fashion” and said the Isle of Man stood as a beacon of hope in the “murk that is the over fished Irish Sea”.

Clover launched the attack in his regular Sunday Times column yesterday, accusing the Edinburgh Government of using ‘bullying’ tactics. He said he phoned the Scottish Government on the issue last week, only to receive a call back from the Scottish Fishermen’s Federation which he had not phoned. He suggested close vested interests between the two.

The environmentalist wrote: “With the arrival of these nomads (dredgers) last year a generation of breeding scallops was again wiped out. Contrary to Mr Lochhead’s view [Scottish Fisheries Minister Richard Lochhead] what is going on at sea is not war against the Scots. Plenty of Scottish fishermen are still allowed into Isle of Man waters. What is going is a battle between sustainable and unsustainable forms of fishing.

“Lochhead’s protests strongly resemble the whingeing of English trawlermen from Hull and Grimsby thrown out of Norwegian and Icelandic waters in the 1970s for catching too many of other people’s fish.”

He said the Scottish west coast was now a hopeless case where white fish stocks had been wiped out and langoustines and scallops were all that remained before fishermen got down to worms and jellyfish. He suggested that Richard Lochhead should look at implementing Isle of Man style reforms in those waters “before mouthing off” to Douglas and London.