Katrina Hodgkinson/John Flowers med rel: New offshore artificial reefs for Sydney

Katrina Hodgkinson/John Flowers med rel: New offshore artificial reefs for Sydney

20140526 Botany Bay artificial reefs_2NSW Minister for Primary Industries, Katrina Hodgkinson, and Member for Rockdale, John Flowers, have announced the construction of two new offshore artificial reefs, to be built off the coast of Port Botany.

Ms Hodgkinson said the NSW Liberals & Nationals Government will fund the two cluster reefs, at a cost of about $1.2 million each, through a new $5 million Port Botany Boating and Fishing Infrastructure Program.

“These new reefs will add to the one the NSW Government has already installed off the coast of Sydney at South Head, and the two we have in the pipeline off the South and North Coasts of NSW,” Ms Hodgkinson said.

“This is yet another example of how the NSW Liberals & Nationals Government is supporting the more than one million recreational anglers in this State, who generate some $1.6 billion in expenditure every year and create more than 14,000 full-time jobs.

“The proposed reefs will complement a number of existing estuarine artificial reefs within Botany Bay, adding to its reputation as a haven for recreational fishing.

“The addition of offshore artificial reefs off Botany Bay will provide a complex habitat for such popular recreational fishing species as snapper, Kingfish, morwong and many other reef species.”

Member for Rockdale, John Flowers, said a new fishing platform, to provide an all-weather safe fishing location within Port Botany, will also be constructed from the new program.

“This program is great news for recreational anglers within the Rockdale community – and also further afield – and another example of how the NSW Government is supporting the recreational fishing sector,” Mr Flowers said.

“The NSW Government is also now looking at providing additional boating access to Botany Bay, for which a number of options are currently being considered.20140526 Botany Bay artificial reefs_1

“Botany Bay is a recreational fishing haven – in favourable conditions people could fish the estuarine artificial reefs, the expansive waters of this large coastal embayment and these new offshore artificial reefs in a modest fishing boat.

“Staff from the Department of Primary Industries (DPI) will now meet with local angling groups and the local fishing community to seek their feedback on location options.”

Ms Hodgkinson said the new reefs will be constructed using at least 60 concrete modules, which are three to five metres high, lowered to the ocean floor at a depth of 40 metres.

“Artificial reef experts within the DPI will start work immediately on an environmental assessment to ensure the reefs do not adversely impact on the natural environment,” Ms Hodgkinson said.

“The NSW Government will be calling for tenders for the construction and deployment of the reefs once the final locations have been determined.”

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