An independent review into the commercial fishing sector in NSW is
welcome, however the Minister must commit to including marine scientists
and conservationists in any bodies established as part of an industry
governance shakeup, according to Greens MP and environment spokesperson
"The Greens agree with the review's harsh criticism of the "silo-like
mentality" of the Department as well as for more holistic decision
making when it comes to fisheries management. However the Minister must
ensure that ecological sustainability applies in all decision making and
that marine scientists and conservationists are included in any new
fisheries bodies," said Ms Faehrmann
"I hope the Minister takes heed of the review's recommendations to
remove political interference in decisions.
"We agree with the need to remove over allocation in the commercial
fishing sector so that those left in the industry can be both
economically and ecologically viable.
"When it comes to fisheries management, economic sustainability and
ecological sustainability go hand in hand. If the fishers remaining in
the sector are more economically secure then they can invest in measures
that improve the ecological sustainability of fish stocks such as
methods to reduce bycatch.
"However, I am disappointed that the report does not emphasise the need
to improve 'ecosystem based management'. This is the modern management
framework required for fisheries today where managers get out of their
silos and take management decisions in the context of looking after the
entire ecosystem the fishing takes place in."
"There is a suggestion in the review that marine parks have exacerbated
the problem of over-allocation by concentrating fishing effort into
smaller areas. The review fails to mention hundreds of peer reviewed
articles which demonstrate that sanctuary zones within marine parks lead
to more and bigger fish.
"Commercial fishers were compensated when marine parks were declared.
The problem was that there was already so much over- allocation in the
fisheries that the government bought out more 'latent' than actual
"Marine parks remain essential tools in responsible fisheries
management. They protect fish stocks and improve the ecological
sustainability of commercial fisheries for the longer term.
"We look forward to the government lifting the moratorium on new marine
parks. Fixing up the economics of the fisheries allows for more marine
parks," said Ms Faehrmann.
Media contact: Peter Stahel 0433 005 727