Director of National Parks
Have your say on the management plans for the new Commonwealth Marine Reserves
11 January 2013
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- Have your say on the management plans for the new Commonwealth Marine Reserves (PDF - 206KB) - a html version of this release is below
The Australian Government will release draft management plans on the newly proclaimed Commonwealth marine reserves for public comment.
The Government established the new Commonwealth marine reserves in November to protect Australia's diverse range of marine ecosystems and habitats, and the life they support.
The Director of National Parks will release draft management plans for the South-west, North-west, North, Coral Sea and Temperate East marine reserves on Monday.
Members of the public will have 30 days to comment.
The management plans will then be finalised and given to the Federal Environment Minister, Tony Burke, for consideration.
Director of National Parks' spokesperson, Stephen Oxley, said the objective of the draft management plans was to ensure the protection and conservation of biodiversity and other natural and cultural values in the marine reserves.
"The draft management plans set out how the marine reserves will be managed and what activities can and cannot take place in the reserves over the next 10 years," Mr Oxley said.
"While the management plans for the new reserves are being developed, transitional arrangements are in place that maintain current arrangements for commercial and recreational users of the marine reserves.
"We're aiming to have the management plans for the new Commonwealth marine reserve networks finalised by the middle of the year, before they come into effect in July 2014.
"Until then, there will be no 'on the water' changes for users in the new areas added to the Commonwealth reserve estate," Mr Oxley said.
What do management plans do?
The draft management plans:
- include maps detailing the outer boundaries and zones of each reserve within the network
- provide a broad description of the conservation values protected by the reserves and outline the pressures and potential threats to these values
- assign an International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) category to each marine reserve and to each zone within a reserve. More information on these categories can be found at www.environment.gov.au/marinereserves/legal-framework.html#iucn
define what activities can take place in which management zones
- set out the rules that ensure allowed activities are carried out in a sustainable manner
- set out the process for obtaining approval to conduct activities
- outline the management strategies for research and monitoring, assessment and issue of permits, compliance, community participation, Indigenous involvement and environmental management.
- provide flexibility to allow for management of local-scale, reserve-specific issues during the life of the management plan, as management needs change over time.
See the draft management plans at www.environment.gov.au/marinereserves/consultation/index.html
For more information on the draft management plans and consultation process, visit the department's website www.environment.gov.au/marinereserves
Media contact: DSEWPaC Media - Ph (02) 6275 9880