Industry blasts Australia’s marine park plan
Australia’s plan to set up the world’s largest network of marine parks has been hailed as a major environmental step, but the fishing industry is reeling.
The country’s marine reserves will cover 3.1 million square kilometres or a third of Australian waters including the Coral Sea and the southwest coast of Western Australia.
They will limit fishing and some oil and gas exploration.
“This is the biggest step forward the globe has ever seen,” Environment Minister Tony Burke told reporters in Sydney, adding Australia would be a world leader in ocean protection.
The minister will make a final decision on the plan following a 60-day consultation process, but warned the process would not involve shifting lines on maps.