Leaked report shows Scotland missed target for marine wildlife protection

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Government document reveals decline in seabed habitats with protected status due to the climate crisis and overfishing

The Scottish government has failed to meet its target for preventing damage to important marine life, according to a leaked report by scientists from Scotland’s nature agency that shows losses of vital underwater habitats.

The draft report, seen by the Guardian, found that seabed habitats awarded “priority” status by the government to protect them have shrunk in five large areas in the period between 2011 and 2019.

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