Category Archives: Press Release

Health Concerns Over Phosphate Mining Project

The Government’s concerned a huge phosphate mining project proposed for the Chatham Rise, off the country’s east coast, could contaminate our food. Chatham Rock Phosphate’s applying for consent to mine the mineral for fertiliser. In its submission to the Environmental Protection Authority, the Crown says there are high levels of uranium in the phosphate the company wants...
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Risk to No-Nuke Status Alleged

Uranium in phosphate nodules that Chatham Rock Phosphate intends to mine could threaten New Zealand's nuclear-free reputation, the seafood industry has told the Government. But the Golden Bay-based miner says the uranium is "incidental" and Conservation Minister Nick Smith agrees, saying it is a side issue. Deepwater Group chairman Chris Horton wrote to Smith and the ministers...
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Seafood Industry Claims Uranium Threat

Uranium in phosphate nodules that Chatham Rock Phosphate intends to mine could threaten New Zealand's nuclear-free reputation, the seafood industry has told the Government. But the Golden Bay-based miner says the uranium is "incidental" and Conservation Minister Nick Smith agrees, saying it is a side issue. Deepwater Group chairman Chris Horton wrote to Smith and the ministers...
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Deepwater Confident of Meeting Ling Fisheries Conditions

The main New Zealand ling fisheries have been assessed as meeting the high sustainability standards set by the international Marine Stewardship Council (MSC). Ten ling fisheries have been assessed and these are part of the 29 New Zealand fisheries that are either already certified as meeting the MSC standards or are in the processes of becoming...
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Minister Commends Conservation Teamwork

Practical moves by fishermen will make more of a difference to protecting New Zealand's sea birds than any answers scientists or conservationists may come up with, Conservation Minister Nick Smith says. Dr Smith made the comments at the launch of Sharing Worlds - Seabirds and Fishing DVD by the Southern Seabird Solutions Trust at the Taiaroa...
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Seafood Industry and Conservation Groups to Protect Seabirds

The New Zealand seafood industry congratulated Southern Seabird Solution Trust’s on its short film “Sharing Worlds, Seabirds and Fishing” which was launched today by the Hon Nick Smith, the Minister of Conservation at the Royal Albatross Centre on the Otago Peninsula. The film highlights Otago fishing and conservation working together for the benefit of seabirds like...
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Fisheries Fight ‘Strip Mining’ Bid

The seafood industry has weighed in with a strong submission against Golden Bay-based Chatham Rock Phosphate's application to suction-mine the Chatham Rise. Submissions to the Environmental Protection Authority closed yesterday, with the Deepwater Group, representing 95 per cent of fish quota beyond coastal waters, saying the mining would have "significant and irreversible adverse effects on the...
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Seafood Industry Strongly Opposed to CRP Mining Application

Seafood Industry Strongly Opposed to CRP Mining Application for Chatham Rise The seafood industry strongly opposes Chatham Rock Phosphate’s application to mine the Chatham Rise, saying it will have “significant and irreversible adverse effects on the marine environment.” In its submission to the Environmental Protection Authority (EPA) the Deepwater Group says the environmental impacts of mining will...
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Seeing What Lies Beneath: Skippers Can See Into The Depths

A Nelson-based Sealord trawler was setting off today on a trip to test technology that will show skippers what's happening on the ocean floor as it unfolds beneath them. The company, which has invested $400,000 in this part of the project, says the result will be "smart trawling" with a reduction in impacts on the seabed...
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New Zealand Seafood Industry Welcomes EPA

The New Zealand seafood industry welcomes the Environmental Protection Authority’s decision to decline Trans-Tasman Resources’ (TTR) application to mine the South Taranaki Bight. Seafood New Zealand chairman, George Clement says the decision was the right one given concerns about the impact of mining activity on New Zealand’s fisheries. “Our fisheries are an important and valuable resource, and...
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Hilborn Tells Ocean Summit Alaska and NZ Have Never Had ‘Overfishing Pressure’ Under Modern Mgt

John Kerry's Ocean summit opened in Washington yesterday with leaders from about 80 countries in attendence.  The conference is designed to elevate the issue of marine protection in three areas: sustainable fishing, action on marine pollution, and action on ocean acidification. Coinciding with the conference President Obama expanded the central pacific marine sanctuary by excutive order;...
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Fishers Urged to Help Keep Seabirds Safe

A Nelson fisheries specialist who has worked with the commercial industry to reduce the risk of seabirds getting caught wants recreational fishers to follow suit. Richard Wells, a specialist with non-profit fisheries management organisation the DeepWater Group, said there were ways of reducing the risk of snaring a seabird, and methods for safely releasing birds that...
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Washington Ocean Summit Told Of New Zealand’s Sustainable Fishing

New Zealand’s fisheries management has been cited overnight (3am 17th June NZT) at the international Our Ocean Summit in Washington DC as an example of how best to fish sustainably.   Professor Ray Hilborn, Professor in the School of Aquatic and Fishery Sciences at the University of Washington, has specifically identified “Alaska and New Zealand [who] have...
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Seafood Industry ‘Needs a Touch-Up’

The country's $1.6 billion-a-year seafood industry is a really well-painted house, the new chair of Seafood New Zealand says. But the missed corners now need filling-in, with scientific improvements, public perceptions and creating a vibrant industry on top of the agenda. George Clement was elected as the industry body's executive chairman last month, and was formally welcomed...
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Push for Hake to Gain Standard

The Maori economy will grow if deepsea fish hake gains a sustainable species standard, 50 percent iwi-owned fishing company Sealord says. The New Zealand hake has received a glowing report from the Marine Stewardship Council, saying the fish is well managed, with healthy fish stocks, which are harvested with minimal environmental impact. The council's report has to...
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$16m export fish gets top sustainability marks

New Zealand hake, a small but growing white fish export to Spain, China and Japan, has received a glowing report in an independent assessment, taking it one step closer to achieving certification from the Marine Stewardship Council (MSC). The MSC holds the world’s best standards for sustainably managed fisheries. Its assessment process, which is transparent and...
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MSC welcomes New Zealand orange roughy’s brave move to enter assessment

Three of New Zealand’s orange roughy fisheries have entered the lengthy and rigorous assessment process to be measured against the world’s most credible standard for sustainable fishing.   “A Marine Stewardship Council (MSC) assessment is a highly transparent and meticulous process and I applaud any fishery that puts themselves under the microscope and scrutiny of the full...
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Call for seabed ‘legal anomalies’ to be resolved

The seafood industry wants the Environmental Protection Authority to defer any consideration on Chatham Rock Phosphate’s application to mine the Chatham Rise, until the legal anomalies of New Zealand’s Benthic Protected Areas are resolved. Chatham Rock Phosphate (CRP) has just submitted its marine consent application with the Environmental Protection Authority (EPA) to mine in a Benthic...
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Mine bid ‘a risk to ecology’

Chatham Rock Phosphate, the small Golden Bay-based company with big seabed mining ideas, has submitted its formal marine consent application to vacuum up phosphate nodules from the Chatham Rise. With a plan that the seafood industry warns could have a dramatic effect on deepwater fishing, the company intends to use a giant Dutch ship to suck...
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Southern blue whiting fish stocks in good health

21 March, 2014 The Deepwater Group today welcomed the Minister for Primary Industries’ decision to raise the catch limit in the main southern blue whiting fishery near Campbell Island from 30,000 tonnes to 40,0000 tonnes. “This is the main southern blue whiting fishery and the very healthy state of the stock means that we...
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Deepwater Group supports sub-Antarctic marine reserves

The Deepwater Group is backing the three new Marine Reserves around the Sub-Antarctic island groups of Campbell, Bounty and Antipodies. Deepwater Group represents the fishing fleets which operate in the Southern Ocean.  These islands are listed as world heritage sites and were designated nature reserves in 1954. Deepwater CEO, George Clement, says these Marine Reserves, in which...
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Squid fishery decision reflects new research

PRESS RELEASE BY NEW ZEALAND GOVERNMENT AT 2:22PM, 02 AUG 2012 Primary Industries Minister David Carter says updated scientific research has played a key part in his decision on management measures for the Auckland Islands squid trawl fishery (SQU6T). Mr Carter today announced the maximum number of accidental fishing related sea lion deaths for the 2012/13 fishing...
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Search for sea lion answers continues

The reason for the decline of the sea lion pup population on the Auckland Islands needs to be identified before a solution can be found, the New Zealand seafood industry says.

The Deepwater Group has welcomed the Minister for Primary Industries, David Carter’s statement today recognising squid fishing is not responsible for the sea lion population decline.

The Deepwater Group chief executive George Clement says the seafood industry fully backs the management measures in the squid fishery to protect sea lions from harm and the research to protect an important part of New Zealand’s unique biodiversity in the Southern Ocean.

“We support the Minister’s call for the Ministry for Primary Industries and the Department of Conservation to gather information on non-fishing-related impact, to determine the reason for a declining sea lion population,” George Clement says.

“We know that introduced diseases have decimated the sea lion colonies in these remote sub Antarctic islands in the past.  The pups are especially vulnerable.  Based on the numbers of sea lions found with wounds from shark bites, and the high juvenile mortality, we also need to assess the effects of predation by great white sharks.”

“Similar studies on sea lions overseas have identified a disease and predator double hit. The sub Antarctic is a hostile environment with many threats.  Declines have also occurred with elephant seals and penguins round the Campbell Islands, where there is no squid fishing.  New Zealand and international scientists have been trying to find the reasons for the changes in these populations for many years, but the real causes have yet to be identified.

George Clement said it was clear from New Zealand and international research in the Auckland Islands, that there are broader environmental, probably non-human, drivers at play, which need to be understood.  He says David Carter’s commitment today (2 Aug Eds) to more government research into ‘disease and ecosystem changes’ reflects this.

“Our industry has gone to great lengths to ensure fishing does not harm the sea lions.  We have refined sea lion exclusion devices (SLEDs), which allow sea lions to escape fishing nets alive and unharmed.  This has been a major achievement and this is why the Government has been able to say no sea lions have been accidently captured in this fishery in the past two seasons,” George Clement says.

“Every fishing vessel that has worked in the squid fishery near the Auckland Islands for the past five or six years has used SLEDs.  Many vessels carry Government observers to make sure they stay within the strict Government reporting and compliance requirements.”

George Clement says the seafood industry has contributed millions of dollars to Department of Conservation science programmes and to other independent research.  This includes measuring and assessing the environmental effects of fishing, minimising any impact, and independently monitoring and auditing fisheries’ performance.

ENDS

For more information:

George Clement CEO of the Deepwater Group

‘Ph 021 932 369021 932 369

 

For a short video illustrating the use of SLEDs, click here

New subantarctic marine reserves established

Conservation Minister Dr Nick Smith today formally established three new marine reserves covering 435,000 hectares of ocean surrounding the Antipodes, Bounty and Campbell Islands from Perseverance Harbour, Campbell Island. "The New Zealand Subantarctic Islands are one of the most pristine places on earth and these marine reserves are about keeping them that way. The marine reserve...
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Disease is killing 600 sea lion pups at the Auckland Islands each year

22 February 2014 Media Statement Embargoed to 9am Saturday 22 February 2014 Disease is killing 600 sea lion pups at the Auckland Islands each year. The disease Klebsiella pneumoniae is killing Auckland Island sea lions in unsustainable numbers. The Deepwater Group, which represents the squid fishing fleet off the Auckland Islands, has written to Conservation Minister Nick Smith on the eve of his departure...
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Stewart Island coastal clean-up: 20T of rubbish responsibly disposed

New Zealand is renowned for its scenic coastline but it’s not always as pretty as we may wish.  Various types of rubbish can be found washed up on our coasts, which is both unsightly and can create problems for the environment and wildlife. A committed group of local residents, council staff and fishermen have braved wild...
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Deepwater fishing industry opposes ‘destructive’ phosphate mining

A lobby group for the deepwater fishing industry says plans to mine seabed near the Chatham Islands will amount to wholesale environmental destruction. Chatham Rock Phosphate has been given a 20-year permit to mine 820 square kilometres of seabed on the Chatham Rise. A catch of hoki hauled into a ship in the Chatham Rise area. A catch...
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New Zealand’s global reputation for protecting oceans at risk

November 8 2013 New Zealand’s underwater ‘national parks’, known as Benthic Protection Areas (BPAs), have been recognised internationally as Marine Protected Areas. The seafood industry is concerned that a proposal to mine the central Chatham Rise will put this protection at risk. “I call on Ministers to stop this strip-mining project before it’s too...
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Audit supports industry actions to protect sea lions

6 November 2013 Measures adopted by the seafood industry to reduce sea lion captures in the southern blue whiting fishery have been supported in an independent review by global experts in sustainability. The measures in place include: real-time monitoring and responses, avoidance of nets on or near to the surface, management of offal discharges,...
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Orange roughy – a new chapter

  1 November, 2013 Orange roughy fishing began in New Zealand on the Chatham Rise in the late 1970s, developing in other areas within our Exclusive Economic Zone over the following two decades. Firm, moist white flesh, year-round availability and a mild flavour ensured orange roughy’s popularity in New Zealand and overseas. Catches peaked in the late...
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Deepwater fish stocks in healthy state

  Reduced hoki catch limits over the past few years have paid off for New Zealand’s second most valuable fishery. Increases in the Total Allowable Commercial Catch (TACC) levels, from 1 October, for a range of deepwater species, have just been announced by the Minister for Primary Industries, Nathan Guy. Both the eastern and western...
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Moratorium on deep sea phosphate mining?

24 September, 2013 The Namibian Government has just imposed an eighteen month moratorium on a deep sea phosphate mining proposal identical to Chatham Rock Phosphate’s plan to mine off the coast of New Zealand. Like Chatham Rock Phosphate’s proposal for the Chatham Rise, the Namibian proposal would have dredged millions of tonnes of seabed...
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Greens side with group against Chatham mine

  14 September 2013   The Greens and a group representing deepwater fishing have formed an unlikely alliance. They're challenging a proposal to mine an underwater national park off the East Coast of the South Island. They say it makes a mockery of our marine protection laws and could create an environmental catastrophe at sea. Chatham Rock Phosphate is the...
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What have they got to hide?

September 11 2013 The company that wants to mine the seabed of a protected underwater ‘national park’ is refusing to share their analysis of the likely damage with the public or with the seafood industry. Chatham Rock Phosphate is preparing an application to strip mine large areas of the  seabed on the Chatham Rise.  Seabed mining at...
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Industry concerned with increased sea lion activity in southern ocean

5 September 2013   The southern blue whiting fishing fleet is making every effort to avoid sea lion captures in the Southern Ocean, after unprecedented numbers of sea lions have arrived in the remote fishery this season to forage around trawl nets. These animals, mostly young males, are feeding opportunistically on or in the...
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Strip mining threatens protected marine area

6 July 2013 Strip mining threatens protected marine area and future of sustainable fisheries An experimental plan to strip mine phosphate in one of New Zealand’s protected areas of pristine seabed risks ruining New Zealand’s sustainable fisheries and our international reputation. The deepwater seafood industry is challenging a proposal to mine phosphate beds within the...
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New seafood industry research funding confirmed

  24 May 2013   Seafood Innovations Limited has secured government support for funding new seafood industry research investment over the next seven years.  This support is contingent on the New Zealand seafood industry committing matching co-funding to the research programme. SIL is the joint venture research company of Seafood New Zealand and Plant and Food Research. The Ministry of...
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New Zealand seafood industry welcomes the National Plan of Action – Seabirds

  24 April 2013   The New Zealand seafood industry welcomes the new National Plan of Action – Seabirds launched today by the Minister for Primary Industries, the Hon Nathan Guy. “The Ministry for Primary Industries has involved many groups including industry and environmental NGOs, in developing the National Plan of Action. This collaborative approach has led to common-sense...
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Auckland Island sea lion pup count up for second year

8 March, 2013 The decline in the number of sea lion pups on the Auckland Islands appears to have ended. After reaching a low point four years ago pup numbers are now on the increase with this season’s just announced count the highest in five years The seafood industry’s Deepwater Group says the increase...
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Speech to the Deepwater Group – celebrating MSC certification

  21 February 2013   By Nathan Guy I want to acknowledge and celebrate the achievements of the New Zealand fishing industry in gaining Marine Stewardship Council certification of these three important fisheries. These certification processes are very thorough. They have to be, if they are going to be meaningful. This achievement represents a major joint effort by the fishing industry, the...
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Hoki gets MSC certification for a record third time

28 September, 2012 New Zealand’s hoki fisheries were not only the first major whitefish fisheries in the world to earn Marine Stewardship Council (MSC) certification, they are now one of the first in the world to be certified for a third time. “New Zealand’s hoki fisheries are recognised as some of the best sustainably-managed...
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Search for sea lion answers continues

2 August 2012 The reason for the decline of the sea lion pup population on the Auckland Islands needs to be identified before a solution can be found, the New Zealand seafood industry says. The Deepwater Group has welcomed the Minister for Primary Industries, David Carter's statement today recognising squid fishing is not responsible for the sea...
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Southern blue whiting certification

  3 May 2012 The Ministry for Primary Industries is welcoming certification by the Marine Stewardship Council of southern blue whiting fisheries managed under the Quota Management System. “This is further recognition of New Zealand’s leadership in sustainable fisheries management,” says Scott Gallacher, MPI Deputy Director-General. The London-based Marine Stewardship Council has announced it will certify the sustainability of...
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Southern blue whiting trawl fishery gains Stewardship tick

03 May 2012 New Zealand Southern blue whiting trawl fishery gains Marine Stewardship Council certification The New Zealand Southern blue whiting trawl fishery has been certified as sustainable against the Marine Stewardship Council (MSC) standard for a sustainable and well managed fishery, and its products can now bear the blue MSC ecolabel. The fishery has...
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The Prince of Wales outlines a positive future for global fish stocks

   3rd February 2012 The Prince of Wales says today that despite evidence about the continued decline of the world’s fish stocks there is real cause for optimism about the future of this vital resource. Citing a new report published today by his International Sustainability Unit (ISU), The Prince says that if sustainable management of fisheries is applied...
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Greens urged to help find a solution

19 December 2011   The seafood industry urges the Greens to work with industry and government to collectively find the real reason for the decline in sea lion numbers. “Like the Greens we are concerned about the decline in sea lion pup numbers but MAF’s recent independent research is telling us that sea lions don’t sustain severe trauma...
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New Zealand hoki fishery seeks re-certification

  15 November, 2011 New Zealand’s largest commercial fishery on Tuesday announced that it is pursuing re-certification under the Marine Stewardship Council program. Hoki was the world’s first major whitefish fishery, and the third fishery ever, to earn MSC certification in 2001; it was re-certified in 2006. But there’s been some opposition from the environmental camp to the certification....
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Changes to catch limits backed by science

 22 September 2010 Changes to commercial catch limits for orange roughy and hoki announced today are proof that the quota management system is working, says Deepwater Group Ltd chief executive George Clement. “These limits have been set by the Minister of Fisheries and Aquaculture using independent scientific information and include consideration of submissions from a wide range...
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Green herrings galore in lobby group statement

30 July, 2010 Environmental lobby group Greenpeace has once again relied on “green herrings” in its latest attack on New Zealand’s reputation, says Deepwater Group chief executive George Clement. The New Zealand seafood industry, which last year contributed about $1.4 billion to the country’s economy is renowned throughout the world as leading the way...
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Times apologizes to New Zealand hoki fishery

20 September, 2009 The New York Times on Monday apologized to the New Zealand Seafood Industry Council for a 9 September story that painted the country’s hoki fishery in a negative light. In a letter to Times Science Editor Laura Chang, the council said “From Deep Pacific, Ugly and Tasty, With a Catch,” written by William Broad,...
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New York Times story on hoki fisheries unreliable and misleading

September 17, 2009 In a rebuke to a New York Times story questioning the sustainability of New Zealand's hoki fisheries [From Deep Pacific, Ugly and Tasty, With a Catch, 09/09/09], the New Zealand Seafood Industry struck back today in an open letter to the newspaper detailing a variety of omissions and distortions in its reporting that...
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Industry supports precautionary approach for sea lions

19 December 2008 The seafood industry supports the Minister of Fisheries’ decision on sea lion by-catch numbers and will continue to work to reduce individual sea lion deaths. The Ministry of Fisheries announced a limit of 113 sea lion by-catches for the 2009 squid fishery this afternoon. Richard Wells, a fisheries specialist from the Deepwater Group Limited said...
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Orange roughy decision part of long term vision

29 September 2008 The Minister of Fisheries’ catch limit reductions for orange roughy on the East and South Chatham Rise announced yesterday are the result of a long term plan, said George Clement, chief executive, The Deepwater Group Ltd (DWG). “Quota owners are working in close collaboration with the Ministry of Fisheries to ensure sustainable management.  DWG fully...
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No warning of high seas fishing closure

1 December 2007 No warning of Minister’s announcement of high seas fishing closure Industry was surprised to learn of the Government’s agreement to close the orange roughy fishing grounds in international waters south of Australia today. “There was no prior warning or consultation with New Zealand business interests, which we expect from an open Government...
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World’s largest marine protection areas

World’s largest marine protection areas will exist forever from today The world’s largest marine protection areas were set in place forever today. This is cause for all New Zealanders to celebrate, said fishing industry leaders. “This is the largest marine area in the world to be closed for biodiversity protection. It officially passes into...
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orange roughy catch cuts ‘business as usual’

20 September 2006 ‘Business as usual and full support for the Minister’s decisions’ is how the Deepwater Group of fishing companies describes the Minister of Fisheries’ decision to reduce the commercial catch limits in some areas for orange roughy, said the group’s Chief Executive George Clement. “We agree with the Minister for the need to reduce the...
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