Award for Isle of Arran MPA and COAST founder

The Community of Arran Seabed Trust (COAST) reports in its April 2015 newsletter: “Howard Wood, chairman and co-founder of COAST has been awarded the highly prestigious Goldman Environmental Prize for his work with COAST promoting sustainable management of Arran’s seas.

It is the first time this international award, the largest prize for grass roots environmentalists worldwide, has come to Scotland and only the second time it has been made to somebody in the UK.

Howard Wood moved to Arran with his family when he was a teenager. A keen diver, he witnessed first hand the impact dredging had on fragile marine habitats. In 1995 he established COAST with his friend Don MacNeish to champion sustainable management of marine resources for the benefit of all. The organisation has now grown from being entirely staffed by volunteers, to having two dedicated employees.

Howard said: “I am delighted with the award. This is global recognition for everything the community of marine volunteers on Arran have been working on for so long.

COAST has fought against the degradation of marine life in the area of sea surrounding Arran particularly from scallop dredging and bottom trawling.

In 2008 it successfully established a No Take Zone in Lamlash Bay and in July last year following COAST’s proposal the Scottish Government designated a large area of the sea around the south of Arran as one of 30 Marine Protected Areas (MPAs).

However, COAST still needs to ensure adequate protection is given to the South Arran MPA and wants to establish better marine management for the whole Firth of Clyde.
Please sign the COAST current petition seeking this protection.

Source: COAST Newsletter, April 2015

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