AM highlights concern over scallop dredging in Cardigan Bay


Mid and West AM Simon Thomas led a cross-party debate on the State of Nature 2016 report.

During the discussion Plaid Cymru AM Simon Thomas stressed the dangers of scallop dredging in a special area of conservation like Cardigan Bay. 

The document reflects the expertise and knowledge of over 50 conservation and research organisations. This is the second such report the partnership has produced and provides an authoritative overview of the state of Welsh wildlife.

Shadow Cabinet Secretary for Energy, Climate Change and Rural Affairs Simon Thomas said:

“Plaid Cymru will closely scrutinise the Welsh Government’s decisions and actions to ensure it meets its objective to “manage, use and enhance Wales’ natural resources to support long-term wellbeing under the Future Generations Act.

“One recent decision that has caused concern is to restart scallop dredging in Cardigan Bay, a practice which was ended five years ago when it became a special area of conservation.

“The Party of Wales wants to see a sustainable scallop fishery in Cardigan Bay but first we have to ensure the current habitats have recovered enough to support such dredging.

“The decision to allow dredging when we don’t fully understand the impact on those areas that are supposed to be under conservation is concerning.

“The Welsh Government should inform us on how it will police scallop dredging to ensure no harm will come to non-permitted areas and how Natural Resources Wales will monitor the impact of dredging on species such as the porpoise and the sea bed habitat itself.

“It is particularly concerning that the decision to allow dredging has been taken before we have a comprehensive marine plan in place for conservation, which has been promised for months now.”

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