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07/14/2016 12:00:00 AM


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O'Sullivan, Grace

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Order of Business

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246

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Order of Business

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Senator Grace O'Sullivan

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Witness


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Senator Grace O'Sullivan

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Grace O'Sullivan

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Order of Business
Snippet Contents:

I know that many Senators hail from coastal communities around the country and I am from Tramore, County Waterford. I bring the Leader's attention to a serious failure in policy that is having an impact on the sustainability of livelihoods in coastal communities and has implications for biodiversity and marine habitats. Ireland signed up to the EU marine strategy framework directive in 2008 and under the directive, we were required by 2012 to have designated a network of marine protected areas. We have failed to comply. It is time we got serious about recognising the value of our marine natural heritage from an economic and social perspective. If we are to protect the sustainable fishing practices of small coastal communities and sustain livelihoods, we must comply. What is the objective in having these sites? These are the building blocks of marine sustainability. Marine protected areas are essential nurseries for fishing species and it enables them to replenish. Many fish stocks are under threat, as Senators know, and this threat comes chiefly from the presence of super-trawlers depleting stocks. It also comes from our failure to adequately protect the foundations of the food supply chain. The Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine will shortly publish the programme of measures for implementation of the marine strategy framework directive and I ask that we put aside some time in this House to debate the report and have the Minister present for it.