The Australian Greens have reiterated calls for a ban on super trawlers in Australian waters.
“We welcome the Government’s decision to finally act on the concerns I have been raising for some time around this issue,” Australian Greens Senator Peter Whish-Wilson said today.
“However, successive Governments have been working for seven years to bring this vessel here.
“What we see here is the Fisheries Minister congratulating himself for cleaning up a mess his own department created.
“Having admitted to all of the concerns that the Greens have highlighted around AFMA’s handling of this issue, we call on the Government to cancel the existing quotas and ban all super trawlers from the fishery until a fresh scientific assessment has been conducted,” said Senator Whish-Wilson.
“We should be reversing the onus of proof by banning super trawlers from our waters,” Senator Rachel Siewert said today.
“The onus of proof should then be placed on the fisheries science and other processes to overturn this ban on the basis that both the issues of localised depletion and by-catch concerns have been satisfied.
“The Minister also has a responsibility to address the impacts of localised depletion on the target species, for the purpose of ensuring our fisheries are ecologically sustainable. If by-catch triggers need to be present, then this power is still deeply flawed and will allow rapid and irreparable fish stock depletion.
“We welcome the decision to review the Fisheries Management Act. This review needs to be independent, public and transparent,” Senator Siewert concluded.