Dear Highlanders and Islanders,
We are a small group of concerned people living on Skye. We are writing to you to ask for a few minutes of your time to help protect our gorgeous coasts against rampant capitalist mass-tourism that is destroying our communities. (deadline for your help is 26th August)
Our coastal communities are being used to mine resources
C-MAL is the company that owns the ferry terminals in the Highlands and Islands. They are owned by the Scottish Government, yet still work like any other big company. They are trying to make as much money as possible. This means that they want to encourage more and more boats and bigger boats to their harbours.
We quote from their twitter:
In our three-year corporate plan, we have committed to enhancing ports for the benefit of non-lifeline services, such as cruise ship calls, fishing vessels and other commercial ventures.
They want to use £580 million of our taxpayers money to invest in the ferry services and are pushing for larger ferries. They claim this is in the interests of the local community, while it is clear that it will mostly support big business and that part of the tourist industry that is causing life changing issues for local people. Bigger ferries allow for bigger piers to be build which can accommodate cruise ships. (See image on this page a proposal for Armadale on Skye)
We believe that it is clear that the proposed expansion will:
- Damage the local ecosystem and contribute massively to Climate Chaos
- Serve the interests of big business over local communities
- Encourage cruise ship traffic and clog up our community with large groups of tourists and yet more cars, campervans and coaches. Which the current local community and infrastructure cannot support, triggering yet more the same sort of investments and unsustainable growth.
- It will bring yet more and more big companies to our communities that extract yet more local resources into off-shore bank accounts as fast as possible.
- It will raise house prices even more, pricing local people out of the market and contributing to what local people call the Highland Clearances 2022.
This £580 million could be better spent to benefit local people. Having smaller ferries leave money left over, for example for, supporting a real local circular economy, such as slow eco-tourism; invest in restoring our biodiversity; funding art mental health projects; improving public transport: buses, trains so that the modern smaller ferries can bring across more people on foot or on bikes. So that locals and visitors are less reliant on the climate-damaging tourism travel industry.
Please follow this link to read about and oppose the large ferry plans (the deadline is 26th August). The form to respond is at the bottom: https://yourviews.parliament.scot/nzet/modern-sustainable-ferry-services/
We want the Scottish government to put their priorities straight:
We want to invest our tax money in our harbours and our ferry services for the benefit of local people, not for big companies.
We wrote a text that explains our opposition to the plans in our local area in full:
Feel free to copy and paste some of our words in your answers:
Thank you for coming together to protect our coast line communities!