Britain’s trawlermen are tough, but not invincible. Giant industrial wind turbines and their associated infrastructure have already wrecked once productive fishing grounds, with more under threat.
The power cables that connect offshore wind turbines are mesmerising crabs and causing biological harm that affects their ability to migrate and breed; the same phenomenon has just been identified in lobsters.
So, little wonder that fishermen are furious that their lives and livelihoods are being sold so cheap to an industry that’s built on lies and runs on subsidies.
Offshore windfarms ‘wreak havoc’ on fish spawning grounds
The Shetland Times
30 May 2022
The Shetland Fisherman’s Association (SFA) has today (Monday) called for research to be carried out before rushing ahead with developments which threaten the industry.
It has used a series of maps showing how large swathes of the seabed currently earmarked for potential windfarms intersect with sensitive ecosystems for young fish.
The Scottish government’s two leasing rounds – ScotWind and Innovation and Target Oil and Gas (Intog) – include 18 possible development sites, including in the waters around Shetland.
Of these, the SFA claims just two are outwith important spawning or nursery grounds for haddock.
Haddock spawning and nursery grounds are shown to overlap with areas proposed for possible offshore windfarms. Image: SFA.
Scotland’s most valuable pelagic fish stocks such as mackerel, herring and blue whiting could are also at risk, the maps suggest.
The SFA urged the Scottish government and offshore developers to investigate the impacts of anchoring offshore windfarms in the middle of spawning grounds.
Executive officer Daniel Lawson said: “Ministers must adopt the precautionary principle and apply it.
“Our government says it wants to support coastal communities, build a world class fishing nation and protect the health of Scotland’s fish stocks.
“Our community relies on a sustainable fishing industry and encouraging offshore windfarms without a full understanding of their impact is a real threat to the sustainability of those stock.”
The SFA has also claimed there is mounting evidence showing the negative impact of offshore developments on shellfish, including brown crab and lobster.
Mr Lawson added: “We must avoid a situation where fishing crews providing low carbon, nutritious and healthy food are threatened with the loss of their legitimate businesses and ultimately replaced by higher carbon food producers.
“Fishermen are now questioning whether ministers or Marine Scotland even took spawning grounds into account in their rush to auction off vast areas of sea to multinational energy firms.”
The Scottish government has been approached for comment.
The Shetland Times
Scottish fishermen voice fears over impact of massive offshore wind farms on key catch species
31 May 2022
Shetland Fishermen’s Association (SFA) is calling on the Scottish Government to consider the impact of a raft of new offshore developments proposed under ScotWind and Innovation and Target Oil and Gas (Intog) schemes, because the sites overlap on spawning and nursery grounds for some of the country’s most popular and commercially valuable fish.
They fear that building turbines in these ecologically sensitive areas could see populations of species such as haddock, cod, mackerel, herring and blue whiting adversely affected.
“We appeal to the Scottish Government and to offshore developers to undertake a full programme of research to more fully understand the impacts of anchoring offshore wind farms in the middle of fish spawning grounds,” said Daniel Lawson, executive officer for SFA.
“Our community relies on a sustainable fishing industry, and encouraging offshore wind farms without a full understanding of their impact is a real threat to the sustainability of those stocks.”
The SFA has used Scottish Government data and information from 120 fishing vessels to create a series of maps that show the overlap between proposed development areas and crucial ecosystems for young fish.
The risks are “laid bare in stark terms”, according to the membership organisation.
For example, only two out of 18 areas earmarked for turbine installation are outwith spawning or nursery grounds for haddock, Scotland’s most popular fish dish.
They say evidence is also mounting that lobsters and crabs are harmed by electromagnetic fields from underwater power cables for offshore energy schemes.
Mr Lawson added: “Fishermen are now questioning whether ministers or Marine Scotland even took spawning grounds into account in their rush to auction off vast areas of sea to multinational energy firms.”
via STOP THESE THINGS
June 17, 2022, by stopthesethings