The Queensland government is seeking your support for increasing marine protection in the Great Sandy Marine Park.
We have only got until midnight the 23rd October to tell the government we want to increase protection to save unique marine life, such as turtles, dugongs and grey nurse sharks!
Follow our step by step guide to fill out the survey.
How to make public comment:
Step One: Go to the consultation page for the Great Sandy Marine Park zoning plan review consultation.
Step Two: Scroll down and click on the survey.
Follow our guide – here are some recommendations when you fill out the survey:
Additional comments to share in the survey:
We support the proposed changes in the draft zoning plan that:
- Removes the designated Great Sandy Area that allows gillnet fishing, to prevent threatened species from being entangled and killed.
- Boosts Marine National Park (MNP) protection to a minimum of 12.8% and increases Conservation Park (CP) and Habitat Protection (HP) zoning.
- Ensures ecological values that were overlooked in the creation of the current plan are addressed. This means at the minimum, creating marine sanctuary coverage for 16% of the total area of all vulnerable habitat types and 10.6% of the total area of all other habitat types found within the existing marine park boundary.
- Increases protection for threatened dugongs by protecting more core habitat in MNP zones and expanding and increasing the number of go-slow areas to reduce boat strikes.
- Increases protection for threatened turtle species by enhancing the level of protection to CP at important nesting areas around Mon Repos, protecting more core habitat in MNP zones and expanding and increasing the number of go-slow areas to reduce boat strikes.
- Increases protection to the only known gestation site on the east coast for the critically endangered grey nurse shark by expanding the MNP zone with an additional 13.5 km2 of protection.
- Increases protection for more than 20 species of migratory shorebirds by applying management provisions that will reduce their disturbance across the entire marine park and will also apply seasonal closures to the four most significant roost sites in the RAMSAR listed wetland.
- Enhances habitat protection through the implementation of no anchor zones, the prohibition of beam trawling in the lower reaches of the Mary river and the prohibition of commercial bloodworming in the Great Sandy Strait and Tin Can Inlet.
- Provides an appropriately funded compensation package for local commercial fishers whose livelihoods may be affected by rezoning.
We call on the government to:
- Provide more habitat protection for intertidal, shallow subtidal and deep subtidal seagrasses, as the current proposal only protects 16% of historical seagrass in MNP.
- Ensure the overall rezoning plan meets contemporary Marine Protected Area (MPA) principles and that the plan expands and improves the existing network of protected areas. We caution against downgrading, downsizing or the delisting of protected area status.
Thank you so much for taking the time to do the conservation survey. You are an essential part of the movement to protect Queensland’s unique marine life.