Assessment of the Northern Territory Spanish Mackerel Fishery 2003

Environmental assessment under the EPBC Act
Department of the Environment and Heritage, January 2003
ISBN 0 6425 4916 8

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About the report

The Northern Territory Department of Business, Industry and Resource Development (DBIRD), Fisheries Division, has provided the report 'Assessing the ecological sustainability of the Northern Territory Spanish Mackerel Fishery' (the 'submission') addressing the Commonwealth's Guidelines for the ecologically sustainable management of fisheries (the 'Guidelines') for assessment under Parts 13 and 13A of the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999 (EPBC Act). Department of the Environment and Heritage (EA) provided comments on the draft Northern Territory (NT) Spanish mackerel submission prior to its release for public comment.

The NT Spanish mackerel submission was released for public comment on 15 June 2002. At this time, stakeholders, interested parties and other members of the public were invited to comment on the submission. The public comment period ended on 15 July 2002, with a total of 5 submissions received. The main issues raised in the submissions were the lack of information on the extent of the recreational catch and the possible impact of Indonesian and East Timor Spanish mackerel captures. Generally the public comments where positive and supported a favourable assessment of the fishery. Following public comment NT Fisheries updated their submission to cover issues raised by EA and public comments.

Following the public comment period and receipt of the revised NT submission, EA drafted this assessment report against the Guidelines. In addition to the submission and associated documents, public comments and NT Fisheries responses to the public comment informed EA's assessment. Although details of the bait net fishery were provided in the NT submission, this is a separate fishery and will not be assessed in this report. EA noted that NT Fisheries have committed to undertake a review of the appropriateness of bait nets across NT commercial fisheries.

See also