TURNING TIDE: Minnie Water Back Beach could soon be re-opened to recreational anglers if marine sanctuary protections are revoked. Photo: Contributed
TURNING TIDE: Minnie Water Back Beach could soon be re-opened to recreational anglers if marine sanctuary protections are revoked. Photo: Contributed

Anglers may soon again fish on Minnie Water Back Beach

RECREATIONAL anglers could soon be back fishing on Minnie Water Back Beach if NSW Government plans go ahead.

The beach is one of 10 beaches and headlands in the state targeted to have marine sanctuary protections revoked.

On Wednesday government began community consultation about plans to remove protections from the 10 beaches and headlands in four of the state's marine parks. The beaches include Minnie Water Back Beach, Moonee Beach and from Bare Bluff to Diggers Point.

Greens marine environment and fisheries spokes-woman Tamara Smith however has slammed the proposal to revoke marine sanctuary protections to allow shore-based fishing and called on the Baird Government to the abandon plans.

"Marine sanctuaries are vital to strengthening marine biodiversity, supporting local economies that rely on healthy oceans and vibrant marine life and ensuring we have fish for the future," she said.

"The Greens are calling on the community to respond loudly to the Government's consultation and make clear that you want to see our marine sanctuaries strengthened, not weaken-ed.

"It is shocking that less than 7% of the state's waters are currently fully protected from fishing in marine sanctuaries

"The North Coast is a fishing community and you need fish to fish but fishing, pollution and poor water quality in our local rivers is contributing to declining health of the ocean and fish stocks. Australian and International scientists say we need 20-30% of marine areas protected in sanctuaries to ensure the resilience and health of marine life into the future. We have a long way to go in NSW.

"The government is on the wrong side on this issue with 90% of recreational fishers supporting no-take marine sanctuaries.

"In my local community two important areas are set to have their protections stripped, one on Tyagarah Beach south of Brunswick Heads and one on the eastern side of Cape Byron.

"I'm not prepared to let these changes through and am calling on the local community to make their voice heard and respond to the Government's consultation. I am sure the many groups and businesses with an interest in healthy oceans and vibrant marine ecosystems will be making clear their opposition to the plan."

The consultation is open for submissions until November 13.



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