Blog: Brexit LIVE: Fury as UK struggles to ban supertrawlers plundering British waters – Daily Express

Although the UK is out of the EU, Government officials have admitted they cannot stop supertrawlers from fishing Britain’s waters. The large trawlers have been accused of wiping out fish stocks and ships, such as the Margiris, have been banned by the Australian government. Tory MPs are now outraged over the presence of the supertrawlers in the UK’s waters and want the Prime Minister to reassess the UK’s policy on the matter.  

Such is the impact of supertrawlers that Greenpeace has claimed they cause a “devastating blow” to the marine life. 

Henry Smith, Tory MP for Crawley told The Daily Telegraph: “My position is quite clear – I welcome the ban on electric pulse fishing but I think this is a great opportunity to ban supertrawlers which are incredibly damaging and it would be popular with British fishermen, the public at large and its something we need to do to protect our coastal waters.

“I pay tribute to the Government for their work so far but we should back it up with a ban on supertrawlers.

“A lot has been made in the Brexit debate about following the Australian example – and this is a great example of how we should do that!”

The Government can only legislate against the type of fishing which occurs, rather than the type of vessel which enters Britain’s waters. 

In certain Marine Protected Areas (MPA), they can ban the practice of bottom trawling but not the size of a vessel or its nets. 

A Government source said: “Crucially, there is no formal definition of what a supertrawler is.

“Marine Protected Areas are set up to protect specific seabed habitats and species.

“MPAs usually aren’t a suitable conservation mechanism for the highly mobile fish that supertrawlers are catching.

“Measures that will work to protect those fish need to apply across their full range, such as quotas.”

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7.20am update: Supertrawlers set to plunder UK’s waters 

Despite the UK having completed the Brexit process, controversial supertrawlers are set to plunder the UK’s rich fishing waters. 

Although banned in certain areas, the ships will now be able to access Britain’s waters as the Government cannot legislate against the size of the vessel. 

Henry Smith, Tory MP for Crawley told The Daily Telegraph: “My position is quite clear – I welcome the ban on electric pulse fishing but I think this is a great opportunity to ban supertrawlers which are incredibly damaging and it would be popular with British fishermen, the public at large and its something we need to do to protect our coastal waters.

“I pay tribute to the Government for their work so far but we should back it up with a ban on supertrawlers.

“A lot has been made in the Brexit debate about following the Australian example – and this is a great example of how we should do that!”

Sir David Ames, MP for Southend said: “It is time to ban EU industrial fishing super trawlers and protect our sea bed and marine habitats from the huge damage these massive vessels inflict upon our marine wildlife.

“There have been reports of supertrawlers causing the deaths of seals, porpoises and dolphins in UK waters. We need to take immediate action to end this destruction”.

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