No Super Trawlers

Not now, not ever. Not here, not anywhere.

Greenpeace confronting the Margiris

Two years ago, Australians united to stop the Margiris super trawler from fishing in Australian waters. Thanks to our combined efforts, the Australian Government put a two-year ban on these oversized fishing boats. But that ban is set to expire on 19 November and monster sized boats liked the Margiris are lining up to come back to Australia after having fished out waters across the globe. We need your help to ban these monsters for good.

What’s wrong with these monster boats?

Dutch Super Trawler

All over the world – in Europe, West Africa, the South Pacific – local fisheries have collapsed in the wake of these super trawlers. Now Australia’s fish stocks and the livelihoods of our fishermen are threatened by the return of these foreign-owned factory ships.

In the waters around Tasmania we have already seen a dramatic decline in the once-large surface schools of jack mackerel. Inviting super trawlers into our fishery would risk repeating that mistake. Jack mackerel and similar species are an important food source for endangered bluefin tuna, protected Australian sea lions, and other important species.

Wasteful, indiscriminate, unsustainable – these super trawlers are like giant vacuum cleaners of the sea, hoovering up entire schools of fish and wiping out marine life like dolphins and seals. The sheer size of these vessels is closer to a huge floating fish factory than a fishing trawler. With the biggest being over 144 metres in length, they can be longer than one and a half football fields. The mouths of their nets can be large enough to fly an A380 airplane through and they can process an enormous 250 tonnes of fish per day.

Dolphins caught as bycatch

Off the coast of West Africa, thousands of dolphins, giant rays, sharks and turtles are sucked up by these factory ships each year and dumped back into the ocean, dead. They don’t stand a chance. We don’t want to import these bad practices to Australia.

These monster boats don’t just threaten our fish stocks but they also pose a huge threat to local and sustainable jobs. In Europe, where the biggest super trawlers are based, everyday fishermen have lost out to super trawlers. Despite representing 80% of the fishermen in Europe, small scale operators only receive 20% of the quota because super trawlers have squeezed them out.

What has the Margiris been up to since we kicked it out?

Since the Margiris left Australia, it has been back to its old bad habits - fishing in West Africa, including Western Sahara, which was deemed illegal by the EU parliament, and the South Pacific where the margiris and other EU super trawlers already crashed the fishery in just a few years in a highly publicised case of overfishing.

Even more scandalous is the track record of illegal behaviour the Margiris’s owners are associated with. Since we turned it away, the Margiris herself has been implicated in a case of illegal transshipment off the Pacific coast of South America, and its owners have been involved in three high profile illegal fishing cases in Europe, including the illegal dumping of 1.5 million kg of edible herring in order to make room in their freezer for higher value fish.

What’s the solution?

turtle

The Australian Government can stop the threat of foreign super trawlers fishing Australian waters by making the current temporary ban permanent.

The global industrial fishing fleet is 2-3 times too big for the world’s fish stocks to sustain. This excess fishing capacity has meant that now the UN’s Food and Agriculture Organisation estimates that around 30% of fish stocks are depleted or overexploited and more than half are fully exploited, meaning fish stocks won’t be able to match the growing demand for cheap seafood.

How you can help

We stopped the super trawler in 2012, with your help, we can do it again.

Take action: email your federal MP to let them know Australians don’t want monster super trawler boats fishing out our waters. Not now, not ever. Not here, not anywhere.

Campaign Updates

The latest updates

 

10 reasons why super trawlers are not welcome in Australia!

Blog entry by Alexandra Harris | 30 October, 2014

Do you remember the Margiris super trawler that we kicked out of Australian oceans in 2012? I certainly do – I sat on a Greenpeace inflatable and cheered as I watched the monstrous machine leave Australia. It was the end of quite a remarkable...

Spring Fishion Show kicks off seafood labelling campaign

Blog entry by Alison Orme | 26 October, 2014

It’s all about the label, according to top model, environmental scientist and compere of the Bouillabaisse Spring Fishion Show which launched the ‘Label My Fish’ campaign in Sydney this month. Roses and sunshine served as a glorious backdrop in...

Horrific footage: Are you eating ocean slaughter?

Blog entry by Nathaniel Pelle | 22 October, 2014

This shocking video about destructive tuna fishing underlines why we need accurate seafood labelling in Australia. In this video, with footage from the Indian Ocean and leaked by fishermen, you can see all the reasons Greenpeace Australia...

For the oceans – every week is Shark Week!

Blog entry by Willie Mackenzie | 14 October, 2014

‘Shark‘:  it’s an evocative and symbolic single syllable. Just the sound of the word conjures up a host of associated images, usually to do with menacing fins, teeth, and a certain cinematic soundtrack. Sharks have been around on earth much...

Navigating seafood

Blog entry by Greenpeace Australia Pacific | 13 October, 2014

This is a guest post by Tooni Mahto, Marine Campaigner at the Australian Marine Conservation Society. Sealife is one of the last sources of food hunted from the wild. Most of what we eat comes from farming, where we have thousands of years of...

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