Northern Ireland's Environment minister tries his best to promote its natural resources
It's hard to know whether Edwin Poots has dropped them in it or not.
However, the Environment Minister Edwin Poots has, perhaps unwisely, highlighted today the fact the Northern Ireland is somewhat behind much of the EU in terms of marine environment legislation and ecological protection regulations.
Mr Poots has suggested a consultation is opened to development and implement a new law designed to protect the marine environment across Ireland’s coastline that will support all aspects of the value chain that rely on the fruits of the sea – fishing, shipping, logistics and shipbuilding included.
Mr Poots said, “I am committed to ensuring that human based change does not compromise the ability of Northern Ireland’s marine environment to deliver economic, social and cultural benefits to our current and future generations.”
With the strategic location of Northern Ireland making it a perfect place for re-fuelling and cargo services between Asia, Europe and the US, the proposed EU directive is designed to bring Ireland into line with much of the rest of the EU, without letting it reduce the commercial benefits already in place. This comes alongside a plan to promote the country’s plentiful natural resources, most notably the power of the wind and the sea, in order to maintain the livelihoods of those communities that have been it by the economic downturn.
A local resident whose fishing business has been badly hit during the recession explained, “We just want to make sure that we can earn a living. Of course, I’d love to be able to continue running a successful fishing business and hand it down to my son, but as long as we use the resources we have wisely, I don’t mind what I do. Promoting Ireland as a natural resource supply is a great idea.”