The date today is 09-02-09

Pick of the quotes

The following are what we believe were very key points made during the debate, but Kenneth Gibson (SNP) recognised one of the key things we hoped to achieve with the Lifelines Event when he said :

“Sea angling’s time has come, and sea anglers’ passionate commitment to their sport is reflected in the fact that so many of them turned up at Parliament today to represent a very diverse group of organisations.”

In closing, The Minister for Environment, Michael Russell (SNP) made the following commitment : “The Government recognises that it should do what it can to help support and encourage recreational sea angling.”

It would be a poor Government that could do nothing.

Click on each name to see what they had to say.

J Scott  ( Cons )

“Despite its significance to many of the communities that we represent…..angling is, I believe, a subject that has been surprisingly overlooked by politicians. “

“Recreational sea angling is an activity that we should all welcome….. because it represents the ultimate in sustainable, environmentally sound fishing. It causes no damage to the seabed and the number of fish that are taken bears no threat to the viability of stocks.”

“We must begin again the important journey to re-establish many of our endangered species so that stock might thrive again…..”

“Scotland is blessed with a rich marine environment that, for various reasons, has been abused for generations. It is arguable that sea anglers have borne the results of that abuse more than most. We have an obligation to right old wrongs and, in so doing, to restore our marine environment.”

E Murray   ( Lab )“The Scottish Sea Angling Conservation Network has suggested that angling centres should be promoted to conserve the sport. “

“I congratulate John Scott on his motion and the interesting presentation that he organised for lunch time today. Everyone who took part found it very informative.”

“The greatest concern is the loss of fish stocks, which is a problem that cannot be rectified easily. We must strike a balance between recreational and commercial fisheries.”

J F  Munro  ( LD )“I am sure that we can encourage Government and agencies to provide more financial support for groups, organisations and communities that are willing to participate in sea angling.”

“ We must make people aware of the economic importance of sea angling as part of the visitor experience.”

We must combine our efforts to develop this recreational marine facility. If we do so, I am confident that we can develop a world-class sea angling facility, to be enjoyed for years to come.

J McGrigor (Cons)

“Income from winter tourism can be especially important to remote communities, many of which are struggling economically.”

“The fishermen’s associations must be asked to work together with sea anglers so that, as I say, commercial fisheries and sea anglers can live in sustainable co-existence.”

Environment Minister Russell (SNP)“The focus of the emerging inshore fisheries groups is first and foremost the management of the commercial fishing sector…. Recreational sea anglers should have the opportunity to contribute to the work of the groups. If that is not happening in some places, I am sure that members will make representations to assist it to happen.”

“When reading material provided for us by the Scottish Sea Anglers Conservation Network, I was struck by the desire to define some species as “recreational species”. Catching a fish and then putting it back is clearly a conservation action”

K Gibson (SNP)“The Scottish Sea Angling Conservation Network is to be congratulated on the very comprehensive document that it produced for its lifelines event, which deals with a number of issues facing the sea angling community.”

“I noted with some alarm that since 1970 the number of Clyde charter boats used for sea angling has declined from 119 to a mere three. Such a statistic shows the pressure that sea anglers are under.”

P Peacock (Lab)“I call on the Government to work more closely with sea anglers, to ensure that their concerns are addressed.”

“I urge the minister to ensure that our conservation policies are rigorous and protect species, and to consider setting up more no-take zones. Conservation is hugely important to sea anglers…….. We must take the issue seriously.”

“An issue that has emerged from the evidence that we heard today is that perhaps we place disproportionate economic value on one part of the fishing industry and do not regard the economic benefits of the angling industry in quite the same way.”

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