Under sections 153 and 154 of the Marine and Coastal Access Act, 2009, IFCAs are responsible for the management of fishing activities in MPAs that lie within an IFCA district (0-6nm). It is therefore Kent and Essex IFCAs legal duty to implement appropriate conservation measures to avoid damage to MPAs by fisheries activities.
Fishing activities are screened for potential pressures that they could exert on the protected species and habitats of MPAs through an assessment. Management measures are then introduced for activities that are not compatible with the conservation objectives of a site. A diverse range of measures are utilised to mitigate fishing activity impacts including: permanent spatial closures, seasonal closures, fishing gear modifications, voluntary Codes of Practice, permitted access or other effort limitations. Fishing activities that are deemed compatible are carefully monitored to ensure any changes in fishing effort are identified. The assessment process for European Marine Sites and Marine Conservation Zones differ slightly as they sit under different legislation and have slightly different conservation objectives to fulfil. ? Marine Protected Area Assessment Process Outline ? MPA Management Implementation Process