National Recreational Fishing Group Fails to Represent Fishers

Media Statement 

Tasmanian fishing groups and national Stop the Trawler Alliance groups are disappointed that Australian Recreational Fishing Foundation has backed down and is negotiating with owners of the super trawler Geelong Star. They have reaffirmed their commitment to fight the Geelong Star and large freezer factory trawlers operating in Australian waters.

“The Australian Recreational Fishing Foundation is not representing every day fishers when they try to negotiate some second-rate deal with super trawler owners who have a track record of breaking government fisheries regulations overseas,” said Mike Stevens of TasFish.  

“We do not believe that negotiating with the super trawler owners will help protect our fishery or local fishing. Any move-on rules or exclusion areas will be bandaid solutions because we still do not have a scientific understanding of fish movements and how to avoid localised depletion,” said Nobby Clark of Game Fish Tasmania Sports Fishing Club. “This vessel is currently fishing with the permission of the Australian Fisheries Management Authority without even consulting important stakeholders in southern Australian states.”

“We do not want the factory freezer trawler Geelong Star operating in Australia, and it is time Senator Colbeck and the Australian Fisheries Management Authority started doing their job properly and requiring the necessary science to be done, instead of leaving it to community groups to defend our fisheries,” said Mr Stevens. 

“While we understand why the ARFF have entered the discussions with the SPFIA we remain totally opposed to the super trawler. We are disappointed that it has come to this when AFMA and Government have failed to implement appropriate management arrangements in the SPF before giving the green light for industrial scale fishing to a level never before permitted in the Australia SPF. An overwhelming disapproval of a super trawler remains within our membership and we will maintain our commitment to the campaign against it,” said John Edwards of the Tuna Club of Tasmania.

“Environment groups, tourism operators, commercial fishers and community members across Australia do not want to see one out of touch organisation negotiating empty promises with the super trawler owner. We want to see the Abbott Government protect our threatened species and local fisheries from this huge freezer factory trawler and it’s time Prime Minister Abbott delivered on that promise,” said Rebecca Hubbard, Environment Tasmania. 

Showing 6 reactions

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  • commented 2015-06-04 20:41:05 +1000
    Yet another reason why coalition government’s don’t work, as no one can be held responsible !
  • commented 2015-05-30 23:10:52 +1000
    Stop the trawler in our waters.
    Its hard enough catching a feed let alone have a trawler raping our waters and us of the little fish left in our gulf.
  • commented 2015-04-20 00:10:19 +1000
    More environmental vandalism from the Coalition government, happy to ignore the science on climate change, happy to use the science on vaccination, can’t even be bothered with the science on the impact of this super-trawler on Australian marine lives. There are very many “adults” in total disagreement with this Coalition government decision, so why aren’t the Coalition government listening?
  • commented 2015-04-19 20:03:33 +1000
    The trawler will only benefit a few and the rest of us will have to just stare at the water wondering where all the fish went!
  • commented 2015-04-18 14:32:04 +1000
    Stop the trawler raping our waters. We are not allowed to. GET OUT😡
  • commented 2015-04-18 01:14:45 +1000
    Do all we can as an Australian to stop the Super Trawler!