Inquiry into state of Australia’s fisheries underway

A FEDERAL inquiry into Australia’s fisheries and the role aquaculture may play in protecting wild fish stocks will be conducted by the House of Representatives Agriculture, Resources, Fisheries and Forestry Committee.

The inquiry will focus on scientific aspects of fisheries and aquaculture including species knowledge, fisheries management, biosecurity, and research and development.

According to the Food and Agricultural Organisation’s 2010 report on the State of World Fisheries and Aquaculture, wild fisheries production has reached a plateau that will not increase until the world’s fish stocks are more effectively managed. Meanwhile, aquaculture is fulfilling demand in place of wild fisheries.

Committee Chair Dick Adams said: “Aquaculture has a considerable potential for growth, and will rely on continued research and development. Changes to the marine environment, especially through climate change, have the potential to cause a mixture of known and unknown impacts in relation to fish stocks and habitats.

These factors will also pose uncertainty for the fishing industry and coastal communities that have traditionally relied upon productivity derived from the oceans.”

With the recent outcry over a proposal to increase future commercial fishing effort on juvenile mulloway in NSW, Fishing World sees the inquiry as a step towards relieving pressure on wild stocks of such vulnerable species. 

Interested parties are urged to read the information available on the committee website before lodging a submission to the inquiry committee. Submissions are due by 3 May 2012 although the committee would appreciate that submissions be sent as early as possible.

Submissions should be sent electronically to

Further information: contact the Inquiry Secretary (02) 6277 4500.

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