Local Govt | National News Video | Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Search


Greenpeace Calls Out David Parker’s "hollow Words" At Global Oceans Meeting

Greenpeace is calling on Oceans and Fisheries Minister David Parker to back up his words with action this week, as he attends the United Nations Oceans Conference in Lisbon.

At the Conference, which focuses on ocean protection, Minister Parker spoke of New Zealand’s commitments to "biodiversity protection overall". Greenpeace says this rings hollow in light of the Government’s inaction on bottom trawling.

"There is overwhelming evidence that shows bottom trawling destroys ocean biodiversity - especially on seamounts where rare, slow-growing corals form, and where fish like orange roughy breed," says Greenpeace oceans campaigner, Ellie Hooper.

"If this Government wants to protect biodiversity as they claim, they should protect New Zealand’s seamounts from being bulldozed by bottom trawlers."

New information released in a plenary report from the Ministry for Primary Industries raises yet another red flag as to why bottom trawling seamounts is unsustainable. Orange roughy, a key species bottom trawled on seamounts in New Zealand, has been found to reach full maturity at around 80 years of age - far later than the previously assumed spawning age of around 30 years.

This means the size of the spawning population may have been grossly overestimated and the information used to set catch limits and sustainability status therefore incorrect.

The report also found that key spawning grounds of orange roughy on seamounts are now missing. Including on the East Coast of the North Island, and on the Chatham Rise.

"The commercial fishing industry is bottom trawling seamounts, targeting these fish as they spawn, and in the process destroying that breeding ground for future use. It’s pretty obvious that these things combined are going to push that species towards collapse.

"These fish are so slow growing and take so long to reach full breeding maturity, they don’t have time to recover their numbers before the next bottom trawling onslaught."

Greenpeace is calling for the Government to urgently close seamounts to bottom trawling, to protect the unique biodiversity found there and fish populations. Over 70,000 New Zealanders have signed petitions calling for this and 80% of people polled agreed they want an end to bottom trawling.

"As the only country left bottom trawling seamounts in the South Pacific, the New Zealand Government cannot, in good faith, pretend that we are leaders in ocean sustainability. We absolutely can be - but it means putting some action behind those words about protecting our blue backyard.

"The science and public opinion on this issue is clear - we need to close seamounts to bottom trawling, to protect fish populations and biodiversity for the future."

© Scoop Media

Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Gordon Campbell: On How National’s ”New” Welfare Plan Resurrects A Past Failure

Sam Uffindell’s defenders keep reminding us that he was only 16 at the time of the King’s College incident, and haven’t we all done things in our teens that, as adults, we look back on with shame and embarrassment? True. Let's be honest. Haven’t we all at one time or another, joined a gang and beaten a smaller, younger kid black and blue with wooden clubs? In that respect, Uffindell’s defenders on the streets of Tauranga risk sounding a bit like the psychiatrist Kargol played by Graham Chapman on Monty Python. Some of the media commentary has also noted how the Uffindell saga has taken the shine off National’s good poll results and distracted us all from the unveiling of an important welfare policy at the recent National Patty conference. OK… So let's put the spotlight back on that welfare policy...


National: Food Prices Climb Taking Kiwis Backwards
Kiwi families continue to battle runaway food prices, National’s Finance spokesperson Nicola Willis says... More>>

Transport & Infrastructure: Have Your Say On The Future Of Inter-regional Passenger Rail In New Zealand

The Transport and Infrastructure Committee has opened an inquiry into the future of inter-regional passenger rail in New Zealand. The aim of the inquiry is to find out what the future could hold for inter-regional passenger rail... More>>

National: Sam Uffindell Stood Down Pending Investigation
Tauranga MP Sam Uffindell has been stood down from the National Party caucus pending an investigation into further allegations about his past behaviour, says National Party Leader Christopher Luxon... More>>

Government: Tax Break To Boost Long-term Rental Supply
The Government is encouraging more long-term rental options by giving developers tax relief for as long as the homes are held as long-term rentals, the Housing Minister Megan Woods has announced... More>>

National: NZ Migrant Arrivals Hit Lowest Mark Since 1990s
Today’s net migration figures show that Labour has failed to deliver the desperately needed skilled migrants they promised, meaning labour shortages will persist into the future, National’s Immigration spokesperson Erica Stanford says... More>>

Green Party: Abuse Revelations Leave No Choice But To Overhaul RSE Scheme
The Green Party is calling on the Government to overhaul the Recognised Seasonal Employers scheme in the wake of revelations of shocking human rights violations... More>>




InfoPages News Channels