Working with Government
We work with governments at the national and EU level to achieve effective protection of our marine wildlife and sustainable fisheries. Most recently, after a ten year campaign, this work culminated in the UK Marine & Coastal Access Act 2009 and the Marine (Scotland) Act 2010. We will continue to lobby for effective implementation of these Acts.
Other priorities at present include advocating an ecosystem approach to fisheries management through Common Fisheries Policy reform.
Some of the key areas of MCS work with Governments
MCS informs Government of the evidence base on which to base their policy decisions. This work includes assessing the sustainability of all fisheries at Fishonline, surveying marine wildlife, campaigning for Marine Protected Areas at www.mcsuk.org/mpa and annual surveys of litter involving 10,000 plus people at Beachwatch.
We involve the public in advocacy to show Government that marine conservation policy has public support. Over 500,000 people have voted for Marine Reserves; hundreds of people took part in the three lobbies of Parliament we organised for a UK Marine Act; over 15,000 people supported a strong Marine (Scotland) Act; over 10,000 people take part in MCS Beachwatch clean-ups and surveys every year; our fisheries campaign has resulted in millions of people voting with their weekly shop for more sustainable fish.
We influence national and European Parliamentarians and civil servants. We regularly meet with relevant Ministers and civil servants to advise on marine conservation and sustainable development policy, most notably in recent years with regard to the Marine Acts. We keep abreast of and try to lead the way in best practice in marine management, and produce briefings on sustainable fisheries, marine planning and conservation.
As well as advocating new policy and legislation, we continue to call for implementation of existing legislation, most notably EU Directives. We provide evidence to Select Committees of MPs and utilise various parliamentary tools in our marine conservation advocacy.