The Cromer Shoal Chalk Beds Marine Conservation Zone (MCZ) abuts the North Norfolk Coast and is one of the most ecologically significant Marine Protected Areas for chalk habitats in the UK and Europe. Chalk is particularly important because of its scarcity and the distinct communities that it supports. This includes a nationally significant crab and lobster industry worth an average £2.4million a year and it is crucial to the heritage, character and economy of the North Norfolk Coast. In 2018 Natural England received new evidence that crab and lobster potting was impacting the physical structure of the chalk bed, an internationally rare habitat. Natural England needed to provide statutory advice to the Eastern Inshore Fisheries and Conservation Authority (EIFCA) on their fisheries management in the MCZ and the significance of this damage.
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