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Spatial Information Supports Strategic Fishing

by Ellen Hardy
19 August 2008, at 1:00am

UK - ABP Marine Environmental Research (ABPmer) has been awarded a contract to develop spatial information layers on the location and economic value of commercial fishing and shellfishing activities in UK waters.

The work, funded by COWRIE (Collaborative Offshore Wind Research Into The Environment), will primarily be used to support strategic siting assessments for Round 3 Offshore Wind Farms but will also be of relevance for other marine renewable energy projects.

In 2007, ABPmer, supported by CEFAS, developed and applied a methodology for assigning estimates of the spatial value of benthic fisheries and shellfisheries to the seabed around England and Wales. This work was undertaken as part of a wider study for Defra exploring the potential cost impacts on various marine uses stemming from Marine Bill proposals to introduce Marine Conservation Zones.

The GIS layers will be developed, in association with CEFAS, using demersal, pelagic, dredge fisheries data and information for English, Welsh & Scottish territorial waters and UK offshore waters; landing statistics and in consultation with the various Sea Fisheries Committees, National Federation of Fishermen’s Organisations, the Regional Advisory Councils and possibly individual Fish Producer Organisations.

Ellen Hardy