October 17, 2014
Green groups made it clear they are not interested in the facts when it comes to the small pelagic fishery, turning their backs on an opportunity to discuss the latest science at a stakeholder forum in Hobart today.
The Australian Fisheries Management Authority (AFMA) invited about 50 recreational fishing and conservation representatives to a stakeholder forum in Hobart today to discuss the small pelagic fishery (SPF).
"While it is pleasing that nine representatives of the recreational fishing sector and one fisheries consultant attended, it is deeply concerning that not one conservation representative turned up," Senator Richard Colbeck, Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister for Agriculture said.
"Green groups are quick to criticise and accuse government of lack of consultation, yet this boycott of consultation gives the impression they are not genuinely interested. They just want to play cheap political games and expose themselves as little more than anti industry activists."
"It is clear the green groups want to ignore the science and play dumb when it comes to the small pelagic fishery."
"They don't care about the facts and want to continue deceiving the community with their fear campaigns."
The forum was an opportunity for conservation and recreational fishing stakeholders to voice their views about the small pelagic fishery and learn about the current management and science in the fishery.
Senator Colbeck said it was disappointing green groups did not attend despite being advised of the forum more than a month in advance.
As a government we have done exactly what we said we would do before the last election.
Australia's Commonwealth managed fisheries are recognised among the best in the world and are sustainable, well managed, and based on the best available science.
The government is committed to a balanced and informed approach to fisheries management.