Scotland plans EU’s largest marine reserve

The Scottish government has put forward five marine special areas of conservation equivalent to one quarter of Scotland’s land area

The largest marine protected area in Europe is among five regions proposed by the Scottish government on 2 November.

It has nominated five regions to the European Commission to become special areas of conservation (SACs) including the 15,694 square kilometre Hatton Bank, which would be the largest SAC in Europe.

Hatton Bank is a volcanic bank 500km west of the isle of Lewis. It eclipses the previous largest SAC, the 12,000km2 Dogger Bank in the North Sea (ENDS Report, September 2011).

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