Electrofishing for razor clam: EIR release

Information request and response under the Environmental Information (Scotland) Regulations 2004.

Information requested

  • Minutes from a meeting regarding the electrofishing for razor clams trial attended by Marine Scotland official(s) on 7 June 2018 in Oban.
  • Minutes from a meeting regarding the electrofishing for razor clams trial attended by Marine Scotland official(s) on 17 July 2018 in Edinburgh.


I attach a copy of most of the information you requested.

While our aim is to provide information wherever possible, in this instance we are unable to provide some of the information you have requested because of exceptions under regulations 10(4)(a) of the EIRs (information not held) and 11(2) the personal data of a third party. The reasons why these exceptions apply are explained in the Annex to this letter.

Within our searches, we could not find a “meeting regarding the electrofishing for razor clams trial attended by Marine Scotland official(s) on 7 June 2018 in Oban”. A meeting was held in Glasgow on the same date and we have provided the minutes and action points coming from this meeting, please see the attachment. Further, meeting notes and workshops under the scientific razor trial are publicly available and can be accessed online using this link: Notes of Meetings & Workshops (webarchive.org.uk)

A further update on Tarbert Bank was recently provided at a meeting between Marine Scotland officials, public sector partners and the SRCA on 5 April 2022. Within this update on the proposal to redraw the boundaries for Tarbert Bank (Jura West), officials set out that we hope to secure future funding to survey this area but prior to the outcome of this survey a review of the boundaries is not possible at this time 

Within your email, you asked Marine Scotland “to examine the trial stats so far with regard to compromised fishing activity in the N/W area”. Scientific trial data is published online, the most recent update can be found using this link: Marine Scotland Update: Electrofishing for razor clams trial (1 February 2020 – 31 January 2021) (www.gov.scot). As the scientific trial is currently ongoing, the data will analysed and the results reported publicly when the data collection is complete.

I can also confirm that we hold a copy of the email exchanges with Douglas Hill following the meeting with officials on 17 July 2018. On 18 July 2018, Mr Hill asked Marine Scotland officials; “I would like to ask you to consider the application for the Zolee at a future date. Should there be a ‘drop off’ or an increase in numbers of vessels taking part in the trial could you please consider putting the Zolee on a reserved list”. At this time we are unable to justify an increase in the numbers of participating vessels or fishers and no new applications will be invited or accepted for the scientific trial.


Regarding the meeting action points from 7 June 2018, individuals names in the meeting note have been redacted due to confidentiality reasons. An exception under regulation 11(2) of the EIRs personal information applies to some of the information requested because it is personal data of a third party and disclosing it would contravene the data protection principles in Article 5(1) of the general Data Protection Regulation and in section 34(1) of the Data Protection Act 2018. This exception is not subject to the ‘public interest test’, so we are not required to consider if the public interest in disclosing the information outweighs the public interest in applying the exception.

You also requested a meeting minute from 17 July 2018. No minute was kept of this meeting. Under the terms of the exception at regulation 10(4)(a) of the EIRs (information not held), the Scottish Government is not required to provide information which it does not have. The Scottish Government does not have the information you have asked for, because we do not hold any reports of the type you have requested.

About FOI

The Scottish Government is committed to publishing all information released in response to Freedom of Information requests. View all FOI responses at http://www.gov.scot/foi-responses.

FOI 202200312773 - Information released


Please quote the FOI reference
Central Enquiry Unit
Email: ceu@gov.scot
Phone: 0300 244 4000

The Scottish Government
St Andrews House
Regent Road

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