Fishing industry says marine reserves a nightma
Of the 33 proposed new marine reserves, the Coral Sea off Queensland and waters off Western Australia, would win the greatest protection.
About one-third of the South West Zone, off Western Australia, would have the highest levels of protection, including part of an area known as the Perth Canyon.
While on face value, much of the South West Zone remains open, fishermen say it will severely hurt business and Environment Minister Tony Burke has flagged about $100 million in compensation.
But the Commonwealth Fisheries Association's Brian Jeffriess says it is unreasonable for the Government to reveal new marine parks without finalising the compensation.
"This is like a government resuming your house for a new super highway but only telling you 12 to 18 months later whether you'll be able to pay out the mortgage you had on that house," he said.
"Now the consultation on that has not even started, it's just not credible to believe it could be within 12 months."
While one Geraldton rock lobster fisherman says those in his fishery will simply move to unprotected areas, Fremantle fisherman Clayton Nelson says his company of 20 employees will lose one-third of its business.
"We're going to lose access to a very benign fishery that can supply local fresh product to the community," he said.
"That's going to be taken away not just from us; it's going to be taken away from the community."
Jewel in the crown
The Government characterises the Coral Sea region as the jewel in the crown of the marine reserve network and it has made much of it off limits to fishing.
The Government says the waters and reef systems support critical nesting sites for green turtles and is renowned for its diversity of big predatory fish and sharks.
But it is also one of the world's prime yellow fin tuna fishing grounds, worth $35 million a year.
Gary Heilman from Debrett's Seafood in Mooloolaba on Queensland's Sunshine Coast is concerned about what that means for his industry.
"We would see maybe 10 to 15 per cent per annum of value coming out of the Coral Sea area," he said.
"I guess some of that could be relocated into the other areas of the fishery in the east of us, but there would be some loss obviously."
He says fishermen will argue strongly to be fully compensated.
"We have our own vessels and we also pack fish for export to various locations around the world on behalf of other fishermen," he said.
"We also have some prawn boats that we provide a marina and berthing facilities as well. Our operation has been geared around fishing in the Coral Sea since about the mid-2000s when we were forced to cut back on catching swordfish out to the east of us here which we had traditionally done.
CC:Read More From Source
Related ArticlesSEOmanix - Your ticket up!
May 24, 2013, 2013 06:23:36 AM
An exhibit of proper sbobet football fat
May 21, 2013, 2013 03:03:25 AM
To keep healthy, Eating healthy is the key
May 20, 2013, 2013 10:31:15 AM
Ideas to Stay Healthy using the Healthy Cooking Appliances
May 20, 2013, 2013 04:53:02 AM
May 16, 2013, 2013 10:26:53 AM