070612 Minister Burke finally admits need for science

Environment Minister Tony Burke is applying breath-taking double standards with his current insistence that the Queensland Government front up to him with scientific information.

"The recreational and commercial fishing sectors have been calling on Minister Burke for months now to front up with detailed scientific information to back up his planned marine parks network," Coalition Fisheries Spokesman Richard Colbeck said.

"Their calls have been repeatedly ignored, yet Minister Burke is front and centre in the media this week demanding the same sort of work from the Queensland Government.

"In the case of the Queensland Government and the Alpha Coal project, Minister Burke is telling anyone who will listen that he can't possibly make an informed decision without suitable scientific information.

"Why isn't he applying the same yardstick to his decisions about the boundaries of marine parks?
"In reference to the situation with Queensland, Minister Burke says he's not willing to have "a situation where I give an approval of some description based on dud information", and that that would be "a disastrous outcome for jobs and a disastrous outcome for the environment".

"So why is he willing to use dud information and risk jobs when it comes to locking up our marine resources?

"It is very rich of Minister Burke to be grandstanding like this over "scientific information" given we have been asking him for the science on marine park declarations for months now.

"The truth is, Minister Burke is deciding the boundaries of marine parks based on his own political agenda and whim.

"Representatives from the Environment Department have even told stakeholders that there is no science behind his proposal to lock up the Coral Sea, and Minister Burke has himself told fishers that it is a payoff for the scale of lock-up in the Temperate East.

"Minister Burke accuses the Queensland Government of a "shambolic" and a "joke" process. Takes one to know one, Minister," Senator Colbeck said.

070612 Minister Burke finally admits need for science

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