A report released this week has found that Australia’s oceans provide economic value worth over $69 Billion a year, a whopping $25 Billion more than is officially recognised. This highlights that marine protected areas are a critical tool in helping to secure a healthy marine environment and strong economic future for all Australians.
The Report, “Stocking Up: Securing Our Marine Economy,” was released by the Centre for Policy Development, and is the first national effort to quantify the value of Australia’s ocean resources. The study found that official accounts overlook $25 billion per year in ecosystem services, such as carbon storage, seafood, recreation and tourism, which Australia’s oceans contribute to the national economy.
The Report advises that to secure our marine resources for all Australians, support long-term jobs in commercial fishing and marine tourism, and provide better catches for recreational fishers, we need to: protect our marine biodiversity, re-build fish stocks, align short-term commercial incentives with long-term community benefits, invest in regular monitoring and review of fish stocks and marine protected areas, and support local communities through innovation.
“This report demonstrates the economic benefits that are provided by healthy oceans for Australians are enormous – and here in Tasmania this is doubly important, where one in three people fish recreationally and we have important regional tourism and fishing industries,” said Rebecca Hubbard, Marine Coordinator Environment Tasmania.
“The report provides yet more evidence in support of Tasmania developing a state-wide network of marine national parks and sustainable fisheries management that can support healthy oceans and vibrant regional communities with real dollar values,” concluded Ms Hubbard.
Download the Full Report: HERE