5 principles that you can support to help Tip the Scales to rebuild the fishery and respect the public’s interest in it.

1: Let’s rebuild
the fishery

  • Many NZ inshore fish stocks have been fished below the internationally recognised sustainability level.
  • LegaSea says: Let’s adopt a target 40% of the unfished stock size as a minimum
  • The New Zealand Harvest Strategy Standard expects fisheries to be rebuilt within twice the time taken to rebuild the fishery in the absence of all fishing.

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2: Stop
senseless waste

  • Fish that are currently being wasted are the first target of any rebuilding strategy.
  • Trawling inshore waters wastes enormous numbers of fish every year. We have been refused access to a report that exposes this level of waste, despite several Official Information Act requests.
  • Recreational fishers need to also develop ways to reduce waste.

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3: Our fisheries
are publicly owned

  • All the fish and mineral resources in New Zealand’s EEZ belong to New Zealand.
  • The resource royalties generated from exploiting the public’s fishery resources are being collected by private quota owners – these quota owners are acting as if they own the fish!
  • Government needs to impose a resource royalty and redirect these rents to the owners; the public

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4: Equal size
limits for all

    • In some fisheries commercial fishermen have smaller minimum size limits than recreational fishers.
    • Size differentials are reducing public catch in an increasing number of fisheries, including snapper, crayfish, scallops and kingfish.
    • This size creep continues for no biological purpose. It is a blatant way of transferring public catch to private interests, creating an unfair advantage.

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5: Value
recreational fishing

  • A US study found that a recreational caught fish is worth 69 times more to the national economy than a commercially caught one.
  • We must establish a value for recreational fishing in New Zealand so that Ministerial  decisions can be balanced according to the social, economic and cultural wellbeing of our people and country.

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Ben5 Principles