Marine Parks Grants round now open for Sunshine Coast fishing industry
$5 million in grants are now available to support the fishing industry on the Sunshine Coast and throughout Australia to transition to new marine park arrangements and to encourage more sustainable fishing practices.
Federal Member for Fisher Andrew Wallace welcomed the new grants and encouraged eligible groups and individuals on the Coast to apply.
“Most people do not know that we have the East Coast’s largest commercial long line tuna fishing fleet right here in Mooloolaba. Fishing is a critical industry on the Sunshine Coast, adding tens of millions of dollars to our local economy every year.” Mr Wallace said.
“The Coalition Government’s Marine Parks Management Plan will deliver world class environmental outcomes, but it is critical that our environmentally conscious, high quality and nationally important commercial fishing fleet here on the Coast also continues to be supported by the Government and by the people who live here. These new grants provide an important avenue to deliver that support.”
The Marine Park Grants build on the Coalition’s world-leading management plans implemented last year, which delivered new levels of protection for 3.2 million square kilometres of pristine marine areas.
The program, part of the $35 millionFisheries Assistance and User Engagement Package, will support industries and communities transition their operations under the new arrangements.
“Eligible projects include a variety of initiatives such as improving fishing gear types or practices, and marketing locally and sustainably caught seafood,” Mr Wallace said.
“Up to $5 million is available in the first round for grants ranging from $50,000-$1 million.”
The Government will open a further grant round to a wider range of organisations representing marine park users later this year.
Applications for round one of the Our Marine Parks Grants program close at 2pm AEDT on 12 March, 2019.
For more information about Australian Marine Parks visit parksaustralia.gov.au/marine.