Jun 14, 2012

A home and habitat for humpback whales and other marine creatures

Member for Grayndler Anthony Albanese today welcomed the announcement that precious ocean ecosystems around Australia will be protected by a new network of marine reserves.
 
Environment Minister, Tony Burke, today announced that 44 large-scale marine reserves would be added to existing protected areas. This would expand the national network of marine reserves to cover more than a third of Commonwealth waters.
 
“This significance of this announcement cannot be understated,” Mr Albanese said.
 
“Our iconic marine environment has been coming under more and more pressure from industry, from pollution, and increasingly, from climate change.
 
“Protecting our precious marine environment is an issue close to the heart of our local community and I’m proud to be part of a Government that is taking real and tangible action to protect and sustainably manage this environment.
 
“This network of reserves will help ensure that Australia’s diverse marine environment, and the life it supports, remain healthy and productive for future generations.”
 
Over the last 12 months, the government has consulted with marine and tourism business representatives, environmental groups and members of the public through 250 meetings in coastal communities across the country.
 
The formal process for proclaiming the new reserves will commence in July with a 60-day public consultation process to identify if there were any issues around the proposed marine reserves that were not brought to light during the previous extensive public consultation process.
 
It is expected that the final marine reserves will be declared before the end of this year.