Message from Dr Jane Elek
As I can see, once Margiris gets its licence to fish in Australian waters, It will be too late for any protests to have any effect. I read that it is planning to start fishing in the SA Bight before coming to Tassie.
Assuming its licence has not yet been issued, I suggest lots of letters to the fisheries minister, Joe Ludwig, who I believe is responsible for issuing its licence; Tony Burke may also be able to object on by-catch grounds (but wouldn’t that apply to all netting?).
Get up has a good link and form letter to send to Ludwig at www.getup.org.au/stop-the-super-trawler ; see my modified letter below. More info from the email Nobby refers to would be good ammo.
Dr Jane Elek
Dear Minister Ludwig,
Please ask yourself, ‘Why does the ‘Magiris’ want to get a licence to fish in Australian, particularly Tasmanian seas?” The same reason that the Japanese and many other international Mother ships fish in our waters, legally or illegally:
The reason is that these huge fishing boats have already fished out most of the other oceans, so that there is scarcely enough fish remaining to support the local fishers. Even the fish stocks in Australian coastal waters where I have been diving for over 30 years (and my father was fishing before that) are a very small fraction of what they used to be.
How can a catch of 250 tonnes of fish every day be sustainable in the long term? This is IN ADDITION to all the other regular commercial licences to which were allocated the best estimates of TOC. And that does not include all the by-catch. How do they prevent the netting and subsequent drowning of protected species such as turtles, doplphins, seals, albatross and penguins? The licence also does not account for all the other fish species caught as by-catch, that are lost to the ecosystem.
Please use your powers NOT to issue a licence to ‘Magiris’ or any other similar trawlers to vacuum clean up the remaining marine life in our southern oceans.
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