We already have plan to protect Maugean Skate

Roger Jaensch, Minister for Environment and Climate Change

The Rockliff Liberal Government welcomes the EPA’s decision to renew environmental licences for salmon farming in Macquarie Harbour.

Minister for Environment and Climate Change, Roger Jaensch, said the renewed environmental licences include new conditions to improve habitat for the endangered Maugean Skate.

This is the latest in a series of actions taken over the last 12 months to protect the skate and ensure the sustainability of salmon farming in the harbour, including:

  • A reduced cap on nitrogen (in fish feed) inputs to the harbour;
  • Updated conservation advice on the Maugean Skate;
  • Restrictions on recreational gillnetting in the harbour;
  • New environmental standards for marine finfish farming;
  • State and Commonwealth investment in a Maugean Skate captive breeding program; and
  • Industry and research investment in remediation of dissolved oxygen levels in the harbour.

“A National Recovery Team, which includes Tasmanian and Australian Government officials, salmon industry stakeholders, IMAS, CSIRO and West Coast community members, is currently reviewing a draft Conservation Action Plan for the Maugean Skate, which will be finalised by the end of the year,” Minister Jaensch said.

“A month ago, Federal Environment Minister Tanya Plibersek wrote to Premier Rockliff, saying: ‘the Federal Government stands ready to consider a sustainable salmon farming proposal that delivers the improvements … necessary for the recovery of the Maugean Skate’.

“The Tasmanian Government, alongside the salmon industry, independent regulators, researchers and the West Coast community, have clearly shown our commitment to work together to develop that proposal and put it into action.

“We want Minister Plibersek and the Australian Government to do the same.”

/Public Release. View in full here.