RecFish SA “misrepresented” on marine parks

FOLLOWING last week’s story on Keep Australia Fishing joining the fight against lock-outs in marine parks in South Australia, (read here) Fisho received a response from RecFish SA spokesman David Ciaravolo, who sent us a media release to clarify the organisation’s position.

Here is the media release reprinted in full:

With a considerable focus on the future role of Marine Parks in SA in the lead up to the 2014 State election, there has been some misunderstanding and even media misrepresentation of RecFish SA’s position on marine parks.

RecFish SA would like to offer to some clarity on this issue.

It is RecFish SA’s view that:

– There should be a review of Marine Park Sanctuary Zones to provide a “Threats and Risk” based approach in place of the current “Comprehensive, Adequate and Representative (CAR)” method which was used in the SA Marine Parks initiative.
– That any current sanctuary areas which can be scientifically shown to protect the spawning and nursery environment of iconic recreational species from identifiable riskor threat shall be maintained.
-That there be no expansion of Marine Parks or “Sanctuary Zones” for 10 years
and then not without firm, peer-reviewed scientific justification.

RecFish SA Chair, Brenton Schahinger said “as a peak body, we were obliged to negotiate with the government of the day to achieve the best possible outcome for the people we represent – the recreational fishers of SA.

“As RecFish SA (and recreational fishers) were not the only stakeholders in the Marine
Park process, it meant that the final scenario was always likely be a compromise in which,
inevitably all stakeholders would be to a greater or lesser extent – somewhat unhappy.

“We did however persist in tying to achieve a better outcome for recreational fishers and
after the key-stakeholder meeting which we attended in April 2012 – There was a 50%
reduction in area proposed to become sanctuary (no fishing) zones.

“RecFish SA would like to point out that if we chose to walk away from the negotiating table,
recreational fishers would have had no representation and decisions would have been
made in our absence”.

RecFish SA is the South Australia’s peak representative body for Recreational Fishers. More info at: www.RecFishsa.com.au

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