Sea Change, Wester Ross

Cover image © Sea Change

Sea Change Wester Ross is a community group and marine thinktank based around the shores of Wester Ross Marine Protected Area. The group formed to encourage more local say in the management of their inshore waters, giving voice to what serves the wider public good and articulating the area’s specific needs. Sea Change’s long term aim is to work for the restoration of the fisheries and ecosystem within Wester Ross Marine Protected Area (MPA). Sea Change also support the restoration of the 3 mile limit.

Central to the group is the mix of fishermen, scientists and artists who get to share knowledge. Sea Change, Wester Ross provides a forum to share ideas and campaign for greater awareness of the need to care for the sea as a whole.

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Restore the marine environment, recover biodiversity loss & protect the sea bed for the wider public benefit whilst supporting sustainable low impact fishing vital to the social fabric of the community;

Survey the Marine Protected Area, collect and integrate scientific data to help build a picture of the habitats and species to inform better fisheries management and enforcement;

Promote the public as the key stakeholder in management of the marine environment by engaging in direct action and lobbying MSP’s to ensure there is the political will to protect the sea for the general public and future generations;

Engage with the community in an inclusive way and promote greater public awareness through factual education and social media. Organise events and educational engagement, to help break down barriers within the community and to promote community interest in the MPA and protecting the sea;

Regenerate coastal communities by supporting environmentally sustainable socio-economic recovery of the area. Promote local enterprises, local marine resources and local markets to create a better balance between commercial and environmental priorities.

Encourage scientists, fishermen and community members to share knowledge and work together with fisheries managers to create a world class model of sustainable local MPA management through multi-sector discussion.

Ban scallop dredging and other sea-bed damaging practices from inshore waters to protect fish nurseries and spawning grounds and work for best practice which fits local needs.