Amendment 77A

Part of Fisheries Bill [HL] - Committee (3rd Day) – in the House of Lords at 4:00 pm on 9th March 2020.

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Photo of Baroness Worthington Baroness Worthington Crossbench 4:00 pm, 9th March 2020

My Lords, I do not wish to detain the House longer than necessary. People have made the points in relation to these provisions far better than I can. I simply take this opportunity to lend my support to Amendment 124, to which I have added my name, and to repeat a quote from the conservationist EO Wilson, which I shared in my contribution at Second Reading. He said that we live in a world where

“we have Palaeolithic brains, medieval institutions and godlike technology.”

This is no more true in fisheries than in any other sector. The fisheries industry is in a complete drought as far as data and good evidence are concerned. We have godlike technology but it is currently deployed in finding the very last fish, to have it caught and brought back for consumption. We must level up the playing field. I believe that this proposed new clause, which would require the phasing in of the best and most up-to-date technology, enabling us to manage this collective action problem, should be supported. I agree with noble Lords who have said that this is one thing we could do that would be a game changer, not only in the way we manage our own fisheries but as an exemplar for other fisheries management regimes around the world. I fully support this group of amendments.