North Devon MP Selaine Saxby leads World Ocean Day debate

Ms. Saxby is known in North Devon for her frequent litter picks and beach cleans

Ms. Saxby is known in North Devon for her frequent litter picks and beach cleans - Credit: Selaine Saxby

Selaine Saxby MP this month led the World Ocean Day 2021 debate in Parliament.

Earlier this month the Government published the results of a survey revealing that 85% of people in England and Wales consider marine protection personally important to them, so this was an opportune moment to spend Parliamentary time on discussion over how the UK Government and the wider international community can best conserve our oceans.

The theme of this year’s United Nations World Ocean Day is “Life and Livelihood”, and so Ms. Saxby focused her speech on three key areas: Blue Carbon, sustainable fishing, and plastic reduction.

As a Marine Conservation Society Blue Carbon Champion, Ms. Saxby works hard in Parliament to push for policies that recognise the vital role marine and coastal ecosystems play in tackling the climate crisis.

Sustainable fishing is also a pertinent issue, particularly in North Devon where a significant part of the economy, and many of Ms. Saxby’s constituents’ livelihoods, is dependent on a ready and sustainable supply of fish off the North Devon coast.

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Ms. Saxby was one of the MPs to support Philip Dunne’s Sewage (Inland Waters) Bill and she is delighted to see so much of this now incorporated into the Government’s landmark Environment Bill, which has passed its Second Reading in the House of Lords.

Selaine Saxby MP for North Devon said: “It was a real privilege to secure and open this debate on World Ocean Day 2021 in Parliament. Blue Carbon is such an important part of our efforts to fight climate change, yet is not something that is currently well or widely understood, so it was fantastic to have this opportunity to debate it with colleagues.

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“I am proud that the UK is pushing to protect at least 30% of the global ocean in Marine Protected Areas and other effective area-based conservative measures by 2030. But I think we can do more to reach ‘30by30’, and I strongly hope that, with the passion conveyed on this topic from so many others across the political spectrum and indeed elsewhere, 2021 will be a marine super year.”

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