News

Call for plebiscite on dolphin-killing shark nets

CAUGHT: This blacktip shark was caught in a shark net off Noosa.
CAUGHT: This blacktip shark was caught in a shark net off Noosa. Contributed

THE Greens have called on the Baird government to hold a plebiscite to see if New South Wales residents support installing mesh shark nets that also kill dolphins, whales and dugong.

Ballina MP Tamara Smith said fear of attacks had bred the idea "a person advocating for safer ocean use is anti-environmental and a person advocating for the protection of our marine life is anti-human".

Ms Smith blamed politicians and media for drumming up "this ludicrous binary argument" when in fact it was not an either-or proposition.

"In my lifetime of surfing and swimming on the North Coast, up until a few years ago I had only ever heard of a couple of shark encounters on our beaches," she added.

"Guys 10 years my senior talked about the surfer at Tallows who lost his leg in the 1980s, but it was not something anyone I knew talked about or thought about.

"The situation now is unprecedented and shocking."

Large rallies are already being organised against NSW Premier Mike Baird's statement that community sentiment had shifted in favour of mesh shark nets.

"In Queensland, which the Opposition is glowingly putting forward as a model to emulate, people are screaming for the mesh nets to be removed and drum lines to be used because six juvenile humpback whales have been caught in the nets on the Gold Coast this year," Ms Smith said.

"Good one, Premier Palaszczuk! But hang on - Premier Palaszczuk also supports the world's largest coal mine that is right on the Barrier Reef.

"My community has always been divided on shark mesh nets, but I believe we have always been able to have a civil conversation about it.

"That is what we are calling on the government to do - conduct a plebiscite to find out what people would really like to see happen."

Shark Files Queensland figures reveal Queensland's mesh nets were responsible for killing 76 dolphin and 28 manta rays between 2009 and 2014, with 406 non-targeted species dying in total.

ARM NEWSDESK

Topics:  ballina marine life mike baird nsw politics plebiscite shark attack shark nets tamara smith


Stay Connected

Update your news preferences and get the latest news delivered to your inbox.

New electorates to be announced Friday

Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk expects the next election will be fought using electorate boundaries to be proposed on Friday.

Commission to reveal new electorates on Friday

Baden-Clay: Gerard blocked from Allison's super, insurance

Allison Baden-Clay’s parents Geoff and Priscilla Dickie outside Brisbane Supreme Court today.

Allison’s father Geoff Dickie granted the power to manage her estate

Unions take to streets as Sunday penalty rates cut

Retail workers will be among those hit by the changes.

Thousands of lowest paid workers to be hit by changes to pay rates

Local Partners

Buderim dad rejects gay son's emotional plea for second time

Bride and Prejudice: Son’s emotional plea rejected again by unmoved father

What's on the big screen this week

Ewan McGregor and Jonny Lee Miller in a scene from the movie T2: Trainspotting.

This week's new releases offer plenty of variety for movie buffs.

REVIEW: Under the Gun doco looks at right to bear arms

ARMED: A still from the 2016 documentary film Under the Gun by Stephanie Soechtig.

An in-depth look into America's gun culture.

Hodges proud to be part of first channel dedicated to NRL

Justin Hodges is gearing up for his new gig on Fox League.

Footy star hopes to provide a voice for players on new NRL channel

Furious Price wants to quit I'm a Celeb after clash with Keira

Steve Price has threatened to quit the jungle.

Will camp ration clash with Keira cause Steve to call it quits?

Novel with lots of heart

The romance in A Quiet Kind of Thunder was only one of the joys of the book.

Book proves to be a gem with layers

Bliss N Eso announce tribute show for stuntman

Bliss N Eso will play a tribute show at Coolangatta in honour of Johann Ofner. The stuntman died during the filming of the group's Friend Like You film clip earlier this year.

BLISS N Eso to play tribute show to raise funds for killed stuntman

$140k damage: landlord says property trashed, contaminated

He had what he calls "the tenants from hell"

Submarine, buses and 3000 tyres removed in $100K clean up

The list of things removed from this property is beyond astonishing

Popular island resort sells to loaded international investor

OUR PICK: Chris Foey's colourful shot of one of Gladstone's great tourism hot spots, Heron Island.

International investor snaps up piece of Gladstone paradise.

Expert: Why renters, home buyers may struggle

Matusik Property Insights director Michael Matusik.

What's next for the city's housing market

Ready to SELL your property?

Post Your Ad Here!