Damaging trawl fishing has been banned in more than 100 square miles of seabed off Sussex to help once vast kelp forests recover. A new bylaw has been approved to prohibit trawling year round over large areas along the entire Sussex coast closest to the shore, to help habitats regenerate and improve fisheries, Sussex Inshore Fisheries and Conservation Authority (IFCA) said. Wildlife groups hope that the move, which they said will protect 117 square miles (304 square kilometres) of coastal seabed, will help with “rewilding” the sea by allowing the underwater seaweed forests to regenerate. It follows a campaign to protect kelp, supported by Sir David Attenborough , who has described the approval of the new bylaw as a “landmark decision” for the management of UK coastal waters. Attenborough said: “Sussex’s remarkable kelp forests will now have a chance to regenerate and provide a home for hundreds of species, creating an oasis of life off the coast, enhancing fisheries, and sequestering carbon in our fight against climate change.” The broadcaster and naturalist also described the new protection as a “vital win” in the fight against the nature and climate crises before the major international climate summit, Cop26, being hosted […]

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