Sustainability Of Pittwater Estuary

Office of Rob Stokes

Spotlight On Sustainability Of Pittwater Estuary

Member for Pittwater Rob Stokes today announced the NSW Government is commencing consultation on the future of commercial fishing within the Pittwater estuary.

The NSW Marine Estate Management Authority has put forward a range of management initiatives to help improve marine conservation and maximise community benefits in key coastal areas.

The Pittwater estuary has been identified due to evidence of resource-use conflict between commercial net fishing and other user groups and the threats posed to the estuary’s long-term environmental sustainability and social value.

“The Pittwater estuary is our community’s most valuable natural asset,” Rob Stokes said today.

“Boating, fishing, kayaking, sailing and swimming are key parts of our community’s lifestyle and are all supported by this incredible waterway.

“Countless marine based businesses, tourism operators and retail providers also heavily depend on the estuary’s attractiveness and sustainability.

“Managing risks and conflicts is vital to help protect this valuable community asset and the continuation of commercial netting is now squarely under the spotlight.

“Various controls such as closures to commercial netting on weekends have been implemented but concerns still remain.

“For the first time an extensive threat and risk assessment has been undertaken and our community is now being asked to have our say on the future of commercial netting and the best ways forward.

“Community feedback will help inform further evaluation of the management responses and final recommendations to the NSW Government later this year.

“Copies of the report, and details on how to provide feedback, are available at .

“Submissions close on 24 April – so I encourage everyone who uses and enjoys the Pittwater to get involved and have their say,” Rob Stokes said.

The Marine Estate Community Survey undertaken in 2014 informed the design of the Hawkesbury project.

Key findings

Over 1,700 people across NSW were surveyed. Some of the key findings of the survey are:

  • the health of the marine estate is considered to be a core value
  • the marine estate is viewed as integral to the NSW community's social and cultural well-being
  • benefits are amplified for coastal Indigenous communities as many of their core traditions are linked to the marine estate
  • the diversity and abundance of marine life and natural beauty of the marine estate are considered key economic values for nature-based and regional tourism
  • pollution of the marine estate, from littering, spills and land-based runoff, is perceived as the major threat
  • less than one in five people considered overfishing a priority threat
  • key management opportunities that were identified included:
    • addressing pollution
    • greater public involvement in decision-making
    • more on-ground environmental action support programs
    • improved public education
    • increased public access
    • actions to rehabilitate coastal habitats and address coastal inundation and erosion

Final reports

Source: Marine Estate Management Authority

Hawkesbury shelf discussion paper Hawkesbury shelf discussion paper (4956 KB)

Pittwater Initiative 6 Pittwater Initiative 6 (221 KB)

FAQs-Management-Initiative-6 FAQs-Management-Initiative-6 (38 KB)

Media Release - NSW Government - Marine Management Media Release - NSW Government - Marine Management (113 KB)

Media Release - Spotlight On Sustainability Of Pittwater Estuary Media Release - Spotlight On Sustainability Of Pittwater Estuary (76 KB)


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