Vital protected areas for harbour porpoises around the UK have still not been designated and may now be nullified if not agreed before Brexit.
Five areas around the UK nominated as Special Areas of Conservation (SACs) were approved by the UK government and submitted to the European Commission on 30th January 2017. These SACs would allow for vital protections for important marine mammal populations in these areas, helping to mitigate threats against species including harbour porpoises.
However, the European Commission have acknowledged the submission but failed to designate the proposed areas formally, leaving the process stuck until they are approved.
There is growing concern that these SACs are under threat - if not approved before Brexit, it will no longer be possible to proceed further and years of work will be wasted and these animals will lose much needed protection.
ORCA's data was used in the designation of these areas and we have been amongst the voices campaigning for them, so we hope the European Commission will take swift action and approve these much needed SACs to help protect our cetaceans.