High levels of concern have been expressed for many years about the
adverse effects that towed fishing gear can have on the seabed and the
benthic communities that live on and in the seabed. To counter these
effects, there is growing pressure to close significant areas of the sea to
fishing which could have significant socio-economic effects on fishing-dependent communities.
Another alternative would be the development of fishing gear with a
lower environmental impact.
Closing established areas to fishing may protect some
benthic communities but it may also lead to increased
exploitation of more vulnerable components of stock and
increase the socio-economic strains on fishery-dependent
communities. As an alternative to this approach to
environmental protection, DEGREE will:
Develop new fishing gear (otter trawl, beam trawl,
dredges) that reduce the advers
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