Fishing trawlers do an immense amount of damage to the seabed and have a devastating impact on the ecosystem balance of the marine environment. They also release stored carbon back into the environment. Trawlers can destroy the benthic fauna both on and in the seafloor. In addition the indiscriminate nature of this fishing technique results in bycatch, juvenile and unwanted species that are usually thrown back into the sea. Most do not survive the trauma.
However, in Sussex there has been a bit of good news. A new local law has been passed to prohibit trawling from over 117 square miles of the inshore waters. This will help the habitat to regenerate and allow fish stocks to increase. The area was once the home to vast kelp forests, recognized as one of the most productive and dynamic ecosystems on Earth. Returning them to the region is fantastic news.
The organisation behind getting this important marine habitat protected was the Sussex Wildlife Trust and you can read all about their “Help Our Kelp” campaign on the website.
In the video below, Just One Ocean Ambassador, Dr Ian Hendy explains why this is such good news.
A diver swims between rocks covered in Kelp