Future Fishermen Could Be Priced Out Of Islands Waters

We’re often told to go for sustainable and locally caught fish but future generations of fishermen may be priced out of fishing in our islands’ waters.

Proposed legislation will only allow you a quota based on your current vessel and the size of its catch of ray, megrim, sole or plaice. And as the two fishing boats, Swandancer and Marauder have been sold, their allocation has gone too.

Maritime Officer Steve Watt is concerned that what’s happened now could affect fishermen of the future.

In particular, he thinks it could affect anyone planning to introduce a new boat or switch from catching shellfish to white fish. A new quota can be bought but Steve thinks this would be prohibitively expensive.

However, this doesn’t mean that we’ll be flooded with ships from the mainland fishing our waters. Steve says that large beam vessels cannot fish within our 6 mile limits and the cost of fuel means it’s not economic for smaller mainland vessels.

A consultation is continuing over the proposals and you should contact Steve to hear how your views can be passed to Government.