SFF supports Mallaig and North West Fishermen's Association call for Sound of Barra SAC enquiry – Fishupdate.com

SFF supports Mallaig and North West Fishermen’s Association call for Sound of Barra SAC enquiry Published:  23 January, 2013

The Scottish Fishermen’s Federation (SFF)  is supporting its constituent member, the Mallaig and North-West Fishermen’s Association, in its call for a moratorium of the proposal for a Special Area of Conservation (pSAC) in the Sound of Barra until a proper enquiry is held.

The SFF says that given the weight of opposition and misgivings over the pSAC, and the way the decision was reached, the logical step is for the Scottish Government to mount a full investigation into the proposal. The SFF adds that this review process should be done carefully and not be rushed, given that the fishing industry and a flourishing natural marine environment have always co-existed in the area together.

Bertie Armstrong, chief executive of the SFF said: “We have noted the strength and depth of feeling expressed by several representative bodies including the Mallaig and North West Fishermen’s Association on the proposed Special Area of Conservation in the Sound of Barra.

“It seems absolutely clear that a pause for reflection by Scottish Government is needed.  Given the weight of criticism of the process used by the Government’s statutory nature adviser SNH and the fears about socio-economic damage to a coastal community, a proper enquiry and clear explanation of the thinking and logic of the proposal is owed to the community, including the fishing interests represented by the Scottish Fishermen’s Federation.  A moratorium should be placed on this proposal until this is seen to be done.”