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Marine Conservation

Volume 448: debated on Wednesday 28 June 2006

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what steps he is taking to promote marine conservation. (79399)

The Government are committed to a Marine Bill which will introduce a new framework, based on marine spatial planning, that balances conservation, energy and resource needs. The aim is to obtain best value from different uses of our valuable marine resources by maintaining and protecting the ecosystems on which they depend. We are developing integrated criteria for the selection of marine protected areas (MPAs), including those for wider nature conservation.

We are also considering how many additional protected areas might be needed to protect marine ecosystems and biodiversity and fulfil the international commitments we have made in this area.