Port Nelson: Greenpeace activists have given Talley’s vessel the Amaltal Enterprise a new paint job this morning, calling for bottom trawling to be banned on seamounts.
A small team of activists painted ‘STOP’ on the side of the Amaltal Enterprise at dawn, and used a projection to tell the company what New Zealanders think of their ocean destruction.
Jessica Desmond, ocean campaigner at Greenpeace Aotearoa, says taking action is necessary to stop ocean ruin at the hands of commercial fishing.
“We’re here today to send a message to Talley’s, who are right now heading out for another season of bottom trawling destruction” she says.
“It’s time for them to stop destroying ocean habitats, killing endangered species and exacerbating the biodiversity and climate crisis.”
Bottom trawling is a fishing method that scrapes heavy nets over the seabed, often over seamount habitats that are home to corals and other important ocean life. Seamounts are often home to juvenile fish, and are used by whales and other larger marine animals for feeding.
Studies have shown that seamounts do not recover from bottom trawling for several decades, if at all.
Desmond says it’s time for the Minister of Oceans and Fisheries, David Parker, to ban bottom trawling from seamounts.
“50,000 New Zealanders and counting want an end to this practice on the most vulnerable parts of the ocean. It is essential we do this to protect the ocean for the future.
“Bottom trawling destroys these habitats for decades, and kills countless other ocean creatures in the process of fishing. It also releases carbon stored in the seabed – making it a double whammy for the environment.
“All of us depend on a healthy ocean. It stabilises the climate, provides the oxygen we breathe and is home to unique marine life.
“This Government has started to turn the tide on ocean protection, just last month banning fish dumping and putting significant bottom trawling restrictions in place for the Hauraki Gulf. Now they must go further, and ban bottom trawling from the most vulnerable parts of the ocean.”
Join the call to demand that the NZ Govt bans bottom trawling on seamounts and similar deep sea features, and stop issuing permits for bottom trawling in international waters.