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Seas and Oceans: EU Law

Volume 476: debated on Wednesday 21 May 2008

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs by what means his Department plans to transpose the EU Marine Strategy Directive into UK law; what timetable has been set for the transposition; and if he will make a statement. (206397)

The marine strategy directive sets the overall goal of achieving good environmental status for Europe's seas by 2020.

The directive was adopted by the European Council on 14 May 2008 and will enter into force 20 days after it appears in the Official Journal of the European Union. Member states are required to transpose the directive two years after it enters into force and the UK will transpose the directive to this timetable using regulations under section 2(2) of the European Communities Act 1972.

The Marine Bill will also include new powers which will help achieve the goal of the directive. It includes a range of specific measures to better manage marine activities and protect UK waters which will contribute to achieving good environmental status.