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Aquaculture and Fisheries (Scotland) Act 2013

Protection of shellfish waters

Section 54 - Protection and improvement of shellfish waters

146.Section 54 amends the Water Environment and Water Services (Scotland) Act 2003 (the “WEWS Act”) to make provision for the continued protection of shellfish waters following the repeal of the Shellfish Waters Directive (Directive 2006/113/EC).

147.Subsection (2) inserts a new section 5A into the WEWS Act. New section 5A enables the Scottish Ministers, by order, to designate areas of coastal or transitional water as “shellfish water protected areas” where they consider it necessary or desirable to do so for the protection or development of economically significant shellfish production. The Scottish Ministers are required to review any such designations by the dates specified in subsection (3) of new section 5A. These dates are intended to allow the Scottish Ministers to coordinate the process of designating and monitoring shellfish water protected areas with the process of characterising river basin districts under section 5 of the WEWS Act. The new section 5A allows for the Scottish Ministers to identify the coastal water or transitional water to be designated by reference to a map laid before the Scottish Parliament. It also provides that the Scottish Ministers must send copies of any designation order and maps made in pursuance of new section 5A to SEPA.

148.Subsection (3) of section 54 amends section 7 (register of protected areas) of the WEWS Act so that any shellfish water protected area that Ministers have designated is a “protected area” for the purposes of that section and therefore subject to the requirement to be included on the register of protected areas for each river basin district.

149.Subsection (4) amends section 9 of the WEWS Act so that the process of setting environmental objectives for bodies of water in each river basin district, and programmes of measures to achieve those objectives, also applies to shellfish water protected areas. It also clarifies that such objectives for shellfish water protected areas be either necessary or desirable to protect or improve the area to support shellfish life and growth as well as contributing to a high quality of shellfish products fit for human consumption.

150.Subsection (5) amends section 11 of the WEWS Act to add a requirement for SEPA, where the river basin district contains shellfish water protected area, to consult the Food Standards Agency in relation to the statement, summary, and draft river basin management plan that SEPA is required to prepare under that section.

151.Subsection (6) amends section 28 of the WEWS Act to add definitions of “shellfish” and “shellfish water protected area” for the purposes of interpreting Part 1 of the WEWS Act.

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