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Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Shop for Marine Reserves

BY choosing where we shop and letting our feelings know, we can slowly influence retail chiefs over the products they stock.

Concerted campaigns by the likes of the Marine Conservation Society and Bite-Back has helped take endangered marine species off the shelves of some big players.

But thanks to the MCS and Co-Op you can have an instant say about the future of our seas.

Over the coming week, Co-op will be promoting marine reserves by asking customers to vote for them at the check-out - with a simple click on a chip-and-pin machine in answer to the statement "I support marine reserves to help sealife - Yes/No".
They did a similar exercise in February at over 2,000 stores nationwide, and netted 298,000 messages of support for marine reserves in just one week.

According to the MCS, it really makes politicians sit up and listen.
In an email, the charity said "This is a critical time, as the final debate for the UK Marine Bill will take place in Parliament when MPs return from the summer recess; the bill should become an act in November.
"At present it has no mention of marine reserves. - just "marine conservation zones" which, astonishingly, may allow people who cause harm within them completely off the hook!"
According to the charity's campaign if things don't change marine ecosystems will degrade further and fish catches to continue to decline due to over-fishing.
In order to protect the marine environment Co-op and MCS support turning with 30 per cent of UK waters into marine protected areas or designated as no-take reserves.
Marine reserves have proved effective in helping ecosystems and fish populations recover from the effects of over fishing and habitat destruction. They also increase fish populations outside their boundaries through what are known as ‘spillover’ effects.
Which means better experiences for us divers - no one wants to dive to the sea bed without the chance to see the amazing life that exists down there.
So If you haven't already, please go to the MCS website http://www.marinereservesnow.org.uk/ and add your voice to strengthen the UK Marine and Coastal Access Bill and ! protect our marine wildlife.

1 comment:

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