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Rec fishers call for super trawler Bill to pass Senate

THE Australian Recreational Fishing Foundation (ARFF), the peak body for the recreational fishing community in Australia, has called on all political parties to support the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Amendment (Declared Fishing Activities) Bill 2012 through the Senate.

“It is clear that this Bill needs to pass so that we can have the appropriate time to build the science and the management of our small pelagic fisheries before a decision on how they are fished is made,” ARFF spokesman Allan Hansard said today.

“Unless we do so we are flying in the dark and cannot determine whether exploiting this fishery will have a detrimental effect on the marine food chain, existing commercial and recreational fishing activities or local communities.

“Getting this Amendment through the Senate is also essential to reconfirm the sustainability of the fishery, particularly in relation to the issue of localised depletion.

“Without this we do not have sustainable food security nor do we have the long-term scientific and management basis for commercial decisions to be made with confidence.”

“ARFF was encouraged by demonstrations of support across the political divide for the recreational fishing community during the debate of the Bill in the Lower House last week.

“We hope this support by the various political parties is genuine and will transfer through to passing the Bill unchanged through the Senate. We also expect Parliament to heed calls by the recreational fishing community to not unjustly to lock us out of the Federal Government’s proposed marine national parks.”

The Australian Recreational Fishing Foundation (ARFF) is the newly formed national peak body representing Australia’s Recreational Fishing Community and is supported by the Australian Fishing Trade Association (AFTA), Recfish Australia, Game Fishing Association Australia (GFAA), Sunfish Queensland, Amateur Fishermen’s Association of the Northern Territory (AFANT), Recfishwest, Recreational Fishing Alliance of NSW (RFANSW), Underwater Skindivers and Fishermen’s Association (USFA), Australian National Sportfishing Association (ANSA), Professional Fishing Instructors and Guides Association (PFIGA), Victorian Recreational Fishing (VRFish), and Australian Underwater Federation (AUF).

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