Government has a laugh at endangered tuna’s expense
Humane Society International will not mince our words responding to claims the Australian Fisheries Management Authority is conserving southern bluefin tuna.
An AFMA media release “Conserving southern bluefin tuna off Australia’s East Coast” issued earlier today says “Australia must ensure it plays its part in conserving the species by not exceeding our quota”.
“AFMA is having a laugh”, said Nicola Beynon, HSI’s Wildlife and Habitats Program Manager “This ridiculous example of Government spin should not fool anyone”.
Australia’s quota allows the fishing industry to catch 70% of all southern bluefin tuna fish caught world wide each year. The hugely inflated quota has not been reduced since 1989 despite worldwide recognition that the species is grossly overfished.
“The Australian fishing industry is as much responsible for the chronic over-exploitation of this species as the Japanese”, said Ms Beynon.
Late last year, the Government’s Threatened Species Scientific Committee advised that southern bluefin tuna meets the criteria for protection as an endangered species.
“This species is at serious risk of going under. The AFMA media release explains some management measures which resemble deck chair rearrangements on the Titanic.
“The Government should stop the fishing – that would conserve the species”, said Ms Beynon.
AFMA’s media release would be funny, if the extinction of a species wasn’t so serious.