Monday, 3 December 2018
Thank you. This motion acknowledges the sad and traumatic interactions between sharks and humans that have occurred recently in Queensland. Sure as the sun rises tomorrow morning, we are going to see more interactions in this country, as we have seen in the past. It's a fact of life in Australia that the ocean is not a risk-free environment. This is something I know personally, as I spend a lot of my spare time in the ocean.
We have to get the balance right, the Senate Environment and Communications Reference Committee had an excellent 18-month inquiry into shark mitigation. It went all around this nation and came up with a very sensible set of reports about phasing out lethal mitigation measures for sharks and replacing them with non-lethal methods that still can protect human life and reduce risks while also protecting our marine life. Shark nets and drum lines kill not only tens of thousands of sharks that are essential to our ocean health; they also have bycatch—whales, dolphins, turtles and dugongs. It's time to move on with this debate and this motion— (Time expired)