Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | Video | Questions Of the Day | Search


Shellfish Limits Must Be Enforced, Say Greens

Reductions in bag limits for Coromandel shellfish announced today will be pointless without better enforcement, says Coromandel MP Jeanette Fitzsimons.

"A reduction in bag limits is a positive step in restoring shellfish beds, but unless enforcement improves it will only see law-abiding locals eating less while outsiders strip the coast bare," she said.

Fisheries Minister John Luxton today announced a big reduction in recreational bag limits for oysters, cockles, pipi, tuatua and mussels around the Coromandel.

Ms Fitzsimons called for government to better resource honorary fisheries officers to stop the plunder, especially by semi-professional harvesters from Auckland and Hamilton.

Only six honorary fisheries officers worked between Thames and East Cape and they had to patrol inland eel fisheries as well, she said.

While the Fisheries Ministry had been looking at basing two more officers at Whitianga, there was little official money to support them.

"A recent clampdown in Auckland seems to have forced illegal harvesters to places like Kawhia and unlucky few who have been caught - most get away with it."

Ms Fitzsimons praised honorary fisheries officers for their unpaid work, but said their patrol of beaches needed greater official status and support. Other coastal people also had to remain vigilant. A seaside "neighbourhood fisheries watch" was needed to protect the Coromandel, she said.

She also called for a public education campaign to make people aware of the bag limits and why they were needed.

"Based on the experience in other fisheries, unless there is a public education campaign and better enforcement, the bag limits will just keep going down, and the shellfish will still be stripped by illegal fishing.

"Without more resources to police the limits, they are meaningless," Ms Fitzsimons said. "We need to catch the offenders, not punish the law-abiding."

© Scoop Media

Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines


Environment Aotearoa 2019: Report Warns Environment In Serious Trouble

The report is jointly produced by the Ministry for the Environment and Statistics New Zealand, and is a follow on from the last report in 2015.

The report says the way New Zealanders live and make a living is having a serious impact on the environment, and the benefits New Zealanders get from being in nature, though not measured or quantified, could be lost. More>>


Gordon Campbell: On Scrapping The Capital Gains Tax

As PM Jacinda Arden said yesterday, there was no point in Labour bringing a proposal into the House that it didn’t have the votes to get passed. Looking back, maybe she always felt this outcome to be inevitable... More>>


Welfare: Access To Hardship Grants Hits Record High

Figures from the Ministry of Social Development for the March 2019 Quarter showed that hardship assistance grants increased by $48 million in the past year... They also showed the emergency housing grants went from $6.6m to $23m, and there were 70,000 extra requests for assistance for food. More>>


City Rail Link: Billion Dollar Cost Rise (And Preferred Bidder)

The revised cost envelope for completing the entire Auckland City Rail Link project now totals $4.419 billion. The revised cost has yet to be endorsed by the project’s sponsors (the Crown and Auckland Council). More>>


Meth Scare: Debt Write-Off For HNZ Meth Testing Evictions

People living in Housing New Zealand (HNZ) properties who were wrongly evicted because of flawed methamphetamine contamination policies will have their related debts with the Ministry of Social Development (MSD) written off. More>>


RNZ Report: Fears Grow For NZ Nurse Kidnapped In Syria

A New Zealand nurse working for the Red Cross was captured by Islamic State (IS) in Syria more than five years ago, and there are now public pleas for any information that could help bring her home. More>>


Streets Blocked In London: Climate 'Extinction Rebellion' Reaches Aotearoa

Across the world, thousands of people are taking part in a rebellion to avert climate, ecological and human catastrophe. This begins in Aotearoa New Zealand today. More>>





InfoPages News Channels