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    Call to recognise the impact of windfarms

    September 26, 2023 - The Banffshire Journal


      Banff and Buchan MP David Duguid has called on the UK and Scottish governments to ensure the impact of offshore windfarms on the fishing industry is considered when new developments are assessed.

      The MP wants to see considerations placed on a more obligatory or statutory footing rather than the voluntary basis that currently exists.

      Mr Duguid has been contacted by the industry, including the Scottish Fishermen’s Federation, who are concerned about the acceleration of offshore wind projects and the impact it will have on the sector.

      Energy Minister and West Aberdeenshire MP Andrew Bowie is to meet with Mr Duguid and the Scottish Fishermen’s Federation over the issue.

      The MP, along with the fishing industry, recognises the importance of wind energy in helping deliver the energy transition, but wants to also promote the long-term sustainability of the industry and coastal communities.

      Mr Duguid said: "There are serious concerns from the fishing industry about the impact offshore wind and marine protection may have on the security of our food supplies.

      "Neither myself or the industry want to stop renewable energy or marine conservation – far from it – but I believe these can be delivered while also preserving the fishing industry and our coastal communities.

      "Voluntary codes and guidance are all very well but they have proven insufficient, which is why the industry and I are seeking a more obligatory or statutory process to ensure livelihoods and sustainability can be maintained.

      "Also, the full impact on our fishing grounds and marine life of offshore wind farms and subsea cables needs to be better understood.

      "As new developments move ahead, we cannot risk the future of fishermen or threaten the sustainability of our stocks.

      "We don’t want a repeat of the shambles created by the Scottish Government’s poorly thought through Highly Protect Marine Areas (HPMAs).

      "I look forward to facilitating this important meeting."


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