Giant fishing vessels known as super trawlers are pushing our oceans into an urgent crisis.
Now one of the world's most notorious super trawlers, the Margiris, is coming to Australia.
This will be the largest vessel ever to fish in Australian waters.
Senegal has banned all super trawlers after its waters were plundered by the Margiris and similar vessels.
It's time for the Australian Government to do the same before it's too late.
Tell the Prime Minister to ban super trawlers from Australian waters!
Dear Prime Minister,
I'm writing to urge you to prevent the FV Margiris from fishing in Australian waters.
You and your government have shown genuine leadership in ocean protection by creating a national network of marine reserves. Your commitments at Rio+20 to halt overfishing were also commendable. Allowing vessels such as the Margiris into Australia's waters will undermine that leadership and the environmental values we all want protected.
Super trawlers such as the Margiris have caused irreparable damage to fish stocks in Europe, Africa and the Pacific; they are from the most heavily subsidised fishing fleets in the world. I don't believe these vessels belong in Australian waters.
The global fishing fleet is 2.5 times greater than the oceans can sustain; rather than allowing these ships new grounds to fish, we need to reduce the global fleet. Capacity reduction should begin with those segments of the fleet that contribute most to stock depletion and ecosystem damage, and least to the social, economic and cultural fabric of coastal communities.
[Your comments here.]
Fisheries management should be amended to prevent these vessels from entering Australian fisheries. I call upon your government to investigate the appropriate scale of fishing vessels in Australia given the world's overfishing crisis and the role overcapacity is playing.
In particular, the Australian Government should ban all super trawlers and super seiners from fleets that are oversized and over-subsidised - starting with the European Union's freezer trawlers, including the Margiris.
The Margiris has been banned from Australian waters
Australian Environment Minister Tony Burke has banned the super trawler from Australian waters until scientific research can clarify its environmental impacts. Banning the super trawler will ensure protection for dolphins, seals, seabirds and other protected species whose habitats would be disrupted and populations diminished by such a massive trawler. Read more >>
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