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30-03-2012 08:56 PM #1
For those interested.
Newman promises LNP will be "fishing friendly"
26 Mar 2012
IN the lead up to last weekend's landslide election victory, QLD's Liberal National Party had promised to look at allowing rec anglers back into marine park green zones currently off-limits, including in parts of Moreton Bay.
On the final day of campaigning Campbell Newman told visitors to the Brisbane Tinnie and Tackle Show an LNP government would be "fishing-friendly".
Newman outlined a number of measures he said would be good news for those who enjoyed fishing, but made no mention of the marine park green zones that were a contentious issue at the last election.
His fishing spokesman, Cleveland MP Mark Robinson, later confirmed to brisbanetimes.com.au the party would examine whether recreational fishing access rules could be changed in marine park no-take zones, saying he did not think anglers were causing significant environmental harm.
Green zones cover about 16 per cent of the Moreton Bay Marine Park and people can be handed on-the-spot fines of $500 if caught dropping a line, crabbing or netting in these areas – measures the government says are needed to conserve marine biodiversity. The restrictions apply to commercial and recreational fishing.
Robinson said the boundaries of green zones in the Moreton Bay Marine Park, the Great Sandy Marine Park and the Great Barrier Reef Coast Marine Park would remain unchanged under the LNP, but restrictions within them could be altered.
"What we are saying is that we have no plans for any further marine parks ... and we are going to not change any of the current boundaries, or zoning boundaries within the current three marine parks. There'll be no changes to the marine parks themselves," he said.
Robinson, who was part of bitter opposition to the expansion of green zones in Moreton Bay ahead of the 2009 election, said the LNP would be guided by scientific evidence.
"We would be looking at the scientific basis behind excluding and locking out recreational fishermen [in green zones], when there does not appear to be any sound evidence that recreational fishermen are causing significant environmental harm or that recreational fishermen are damaging sustainability," he said.
"If we find that there is no significant environmental harm or significant impact on fish sustainability, the question is why would we continue to lock people out of an area if there's no evidence that they're causing harm?"
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