Our seas are at risk – tell the government you want action
Make your voice heard by making a submission on Marine Protected Areas before Friday, July 30th
The oceans give us everything. For generations we have lived off the sea – especially here in Clare. But our seas are now at crisis point, following years of attack from supertrawlers, aquaculture, oil and gas exploration, plastic and noise pollution, to mention just a few of the threats to our precious marine life. Large predatory fish have declined by 90% since the advent of industrial fishing and many species face extinction.
The good news is that sea-life has a remarkable ability to bounce back once these threats are removed. Scientists worldwide agree that a network of properly-managed Marine Protected Areas (MPAs) allows marine habitats to recover and replenish.
Just 2% of Ireland’s incredibly diverse sea area is designated as protected areas, but there is almost no monitoring or policing of these. Supertrawlers can legally operate in these areas.
Clare-based ocean wildlife filmmaker Ken O’Sullivan says that to rebuild marine ecosystems, we must designate at least 30% of our ocean for special protection by 2030. As marine life recovers, fish catches will increase and create sustainable jobs.
Ken is backing a call by Clare PPN’s environmental groups and Clare Environmental Network for groups and individuals in Clare to let the Government know we care about Ireland’s marine environment and want meaningful action to protect it.
You can have your say by making a submission as part of the government’s public consultation on an expert report, ‘Expanding Ireland’s Marine Protected Area Network’. The consultation closes next Friday, July 30th, at 5pm.
HOW TO TAKE ACTION:
If you can spare 10 or 15 minutes, please send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org, with the subject line ‘MPA Public Consultation 2021’. You don’t need to be an expert and your submission can be as short or long as you like.
An email written by you will have more impact than a template email, but here are a few points you might like to make…
I support the expert report and would like to see the recommendations being swiftly implemented.
I would also like to see:
• Immediate action to protect existing Special Areas of Conservation (SACs) and Special Protection Areas, for example the SAC in the Shannon Estuary.
• No industrial fishing in Marine Protected Areas (MPAs) – and especially no bottom-towed gears.
• 30% of Irish waters as MPAs as a minimum target for 2030.
• Support for fishing communities in Clare that may be negatively impacted by MPAs.
• Proper investment in scientific data gathering.
• All MPAs to be actively managed with public participation.
Another way to make a submission is go to the public consultation website and fill in an anonymous survey (where you can also download the full MPA report):
You can read more about MPAs at the Irish Wildlife Trust’s excellent website: