Shark fin Bill unjust, says Geraldton MLA Ian Blayney
The Greens have introduced a Bill into the WA Parliament opposing the sale of shark fins, but Labor and Liberal members voiced strong opposition to the move, making it unlikely to succeed.
Member for Geraldton Ian Blayney, who is now shadow fisheries minister, said the Shark Fin Prohibition Bill was flawed and unjust.
“Banning WA fishermen from selling the fins from their catches would cause considerable hardship,” he said.
Mr Blayney said making the sale of shark fin an offence would penalise professional fisherman who sold it with the carcass as part of a sustainably-caught shark.
“There is no point in the shark fin going to waste if there is a market for it,” he said.
“It is already an offence in WA to land fins without the carcasses so this Bill does nothing to improve or regulate sustainable fishing practices in Western Australia.”
Fisheries minister Dave Kelly was in agreement.
“The international practice of shark finning, which involves cutting off the fins and discarding the rest of the shark, is awful and I can understand people’s disgust,” he said.
“That’s why the practice is illegal in WA.
“Prior to tabling this Bill, The Greens did not consult with the Government.
“I have sought advice from the department about the Bill tabled by Ms Diane Evers.”
Ms Evers, who is Greens member for South West, tabled the Bill in the Legislative Council last month.
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