Northumberland Inshore Fisheries and Conservation Authority (NIFCA) has today introduced a new byelaw to prohibit all dredging by fishing vessels for scallops in the NIFCA district.
The district covers the sea area from the Scottish Border to the midpoint of the River Tyne and six miles out to sea.
NIFCA chair Les Weller, explains: “Following an extensive public consultation with stakeholders including the commercial fishing industry and careful consideration, looking at all available options and taking stakeholder comments into account, the Authority made this decision to ensure the long-term protection of the marine environment in the NIFCA district and the security of the local potting industry regarding crab and lobster stocks.
“It is widely accepted that dredging activities negatively impact the seabed, causing harm to the sea fish and shellfish and marine plants thriving there. It is important therefore that NIFCA has been successful in proactively bringing in the ban for the benefit of the marine environment and our local fishing industry.”
The byelaw can be viewed at www.nifca.gov.uk/byelaws/
You can also contact NIFCA at: email@example.com or telephone: 01670 797676.