To ask Her Majesty's Government whether, in order to preserve the marine floor and conserve marine stocks, they will set rules to limit scallopers to a maximum of 8 dredges per side and a maximum of 221 kw power in the zone 6 to 12 miles offshore. [HL377]
We are considering the appropriate course of action on this issue in conjunction with the devolved Administrations. This may be to pursue a solution in EU legislation by seeking to extend the restriction which currently prevents any vessels over 221 kw from beam trawling in the 12 nautical miles zone around UK waters to scallop dredging. An alternative option would be to seek to agree bilateral agreements with other member states. Powers under the Marine and Coastal Access Act 2009 will enable restriction of fishing activities where this is appropriate for nature conservation purposes.