FISHERIES Queensland has placed a temporary fishing closure on Gladstone Harbour due to contamination caused by dredging associated with contruction of a liquefied natural gas plant.
Biosecurity Queensland is testing local fish affected by the contamination as there have been reports of barramundi and other fish floating to the surface dying. The fish have been reported as displaying bacterial and parasitic infections.
“Public health is the number one priority,” said Department of Employment, Economic Development and Innovation (DEEDI) director-general Ian Fletcher.
“Fisheries Queensland has determined the boundaries for the temporary closure will be between Deception Creek at the top end of The Narrows down to Rodds Peninsula and to the outer edge of Facing Island,” he said.
A Fisho source believes the contaminated fish findings may be linked to earlier reported deaths of turtles and dugong in the area and a sign of an ecosystem collapsing from the weight of continuing onshore development.
Safe Food Production Queensland has said the closure ensured fish that were potentially unsuitable for consumption would not enter the food chain.