11 Oct 2005

Australia's Senate endorses call for action on destructive deep sea fishing

8:36 pm on 11 October 2005

Australia's Senate has backed the call by a Green senator for urgent action on deep sea fishing in the Pacific.

The Senate has passed a motion on destructive deep sea fishing practices, which includes support for a UN General Assembly resolution demanding urgent action in international waters.

The UN resolution focuses on how to deal with the threat to deep-sea biodiversity posed by high seas bottom trawling, calling for an immediate interim prohibition until sustainable management practices can be adopted under international law.

The motion was put up by Senator Rachel Siewert who is concerned that the practice is unnecessarily destructive..

Senator Siewert says it is important that the Australian Government pushes hard for a moratorium at the UN General Assembly in November.

The senator says a moratorium would allow time for the UN to assess the sustainability of these ecosystems and develop a legally-binding governance framework for fisheries.