The Wildlife Trusts are calling on the Government to support the use of ‘best available evidence’ for the designation of Marine Conservation Zones and would like to see all 127 designated.
In 1912 Charles Rothschild founded the ‘Society for the Promotion of Nature Reserves’ (SPNR). Its initial aim was to create a list of Britain’s finest wildlife sites for potential purchase as nature reserves.
Three years of information gathering followed – the first ever national survey of wildlife sites – in England, Scotland, Wales and Ireland. Rothschild and his colleagues were looking for the ‘breeding-places of scarce creatures’, the ‘localities of scarce plants’ and areas of ‘geological interest’. By 1915 they had compiled a list of 284 sites ‘worthy of preservation’ – the Rothschild Reserves.
While many of these original sites on the land are now protected we still need to ensure that we have similar sites in the sea that are also protected.
127 MCZs were recommended for designation and ultimately protection by over one million stakeholders. However we main deeply concerned that the government will only designate a small proportion of these zones.
It took more than 36 years to get protection for the Rothschild list. What we must ensure is that the 127 MCZs don’t face the same fate. Even now we know some of the zones have been damaged since being recommended.
Sign up to help now at http://wildlifetrusts.org/MCZfriends