Marine environment

Standard Notes

22.12.2014Seabass fishing
Seabass - an important fish species for commercial fishermen and recreational anglers. This note addresses issues around seabass Minnimum Landing Size, stock management and current Government policy.
22.12.2014UK Fishing Quota Agreements for 2015
This House of Commons Library Standrad Note summarises the negotiations and decisions taken over UK fishing quota agreements for 2015 made under the reformed Common Fisheries Policy.
09.12.2013Marine Conservation Zones in England
Marine Conservation Zones are being introduced to protect nationally important marine environments. 127 sites were put forward by regional stakeholder groups, and the Government has indicated that it may designate 31 sites in 2013. The Government may designate more MCZ in following years depending on the resources available. A final decision will be taken in autumn 2013.
21.12.2012Icy fishing: UK and Iceland fish stock disputes
In spite of generally excellent bilateral relations, Iceland and the UK have had a number of fisheries disputes. There are now increasing tensions between the two parties after Iceland started catching large quantities of mackerel. Iceland has been condemned for 'plundering' the stock and for threatening its long-term future. The stock is worth some 200 million to the UK economy. The dispute has become known as the Mackerel War.
18.07.2012Antarctica: the treaty system and territorial claims
The unique treaty system that protects the Antarctic is constantly updated and sometimes challenged. A current Private Member's Bill would implement recent changes in the UK.

Research Papers

19.07.2009Marine and Coastal Access Bill [HL]: Committee Stage Report. Bill 137 2008-09.
The Bill would set up a new Marine Management Organisation (MMO); streamline marine licensing; introduce marine planning; reform fisheries management; provide for Marine Conservation Zones; and enable the creation of a route around the English coast.
16.06.2009Marine and Coastal Access Bill [HL]
The Bill covers a broad range of marine issues and would: (1) set up a new Marine Management Organisation (MMO) under which many of the existing, diverse areas of marine regulation would be centralised; (2) streamline the existing marine licensing system and provide powers to create a joined up marine planning policy; (3) introduce new measures to reform fisheries management; (4) provide a framework for establishing marine conservation zones; and, (5) enable the creation of a route around the English coast.
24.10.2001Marine Wildlife Conservation Bill (Bill 8 of 2001-02)
Marine Wildlife Conservation Bill (Bill 8 of 2001/02). House of Commons Library Research Paper 01/76.

Select Committee Reports

25.01.2011The marine policy statement.
Environment, Food and Rural Affairs Select Committee report [Commons]
14.07.2009Legislative scrutiny: Marine and Coastal Access Bill;
Government response. Human Rights Joint Select Committee report [Commons and Lords]
31.03.2009Legislative scrutiny: Health Bill; Marine and Coastal Access Bill.
Human Rights Joint Select Committee report [Commons and Lords]

Early Day Motions

That this House congratulates the five strong Row for Freedom crew on their historic achievement of completing the fastest crossing of the Atlantic Ocean by an all-female team and the ...
That this House condemns the departure of the Japanese whaling fleet for Antarctica with the intention of killing almost 1,000 whales; believes that whaling is cruel and unnecessary ...
That this House deplores the decision of the Secretary of State for Transport and the Shipping Minister to recommend the closure of the Swansea Maritime Rescue Co-ordination Centre ...
That this House congratulates the Save Swansea Coastguard Campaign, established to oppose the Government's recommendation to close Swansea Maritime Rescue Centre at Mumbles, for its ...
That this House notes that HM Treasury has written to hon. Members explaining the details ofthe new Coastal Communities Fund; further notes that this fund will see over 23 million invested ...

POST Papers

25.10.2013Negative Emissions Technologies
If emissions of greenhouse gases are not sufficiently mitigated, it may become necessary to artificially accelerate the rate at which they are removed from the atmosphere in order to restrict global warming. This POSTnote provides an overview of some technologies that could remove atmospheric CO2 and summarises the environmental, social and economic issues they raise.
06.06.2013Selection of Marine Conservation Zones
Marine Conservation Zones may contribute to the protection and recovery of the marine environment. This POSTnote examines the process and approach used to select and designate zones, and difficulties in identifying and managing suitable areas.
15.09.2011Marine planning
This POSTnote describes the marine planning process and considers the challenges it will face.
01.09.2010Sea level rise, September 2010
This POSTnote summerizes the causes of sea level rise, and the uncertainties in and the consequences for UK climate change adaptation.
01.10.2009Coastal Management, October 2009
Predicted sea level rise and higher storm surges will increase the risk of coastal erosion and flooding. In response to this challenge, flood and coastal erosion risk management is undergoing direction and policy change. This POSTnote examines past and present coastal management policy and the main issues arising for the future English coastline.
01.01.2009Marine renewables, January 2009
Around 15-20% of the UK's electricity could potentially be produced from marine renewable sources, but the technology is not mature. This POSTnote considers the technologies available and the environmental, economic and technological challenges involved in their deployment.


  • Research Papers (RP) - briefings produced by the House of Commons Library on Bills, topical issues and regular statistics
  • Standard Notes (SN) - shorter, topical briefings from the Commons Library
  • Early Day Motions (EDMs) - formal motions submitted by MPs in the House of Commons
  • POST Notes - short briefing notes produced by the Parliamentary Office of Science and Technology
  • Lords Library Notes (LLN) - papers compiled by the House of Lords Library on Bills and for debates in the Lords
  • Select Committee Reports - papers produced by all select committees of both Houses