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Protection sought for Queensland surf breaks

Protection sought for Queensland surf breaks
March 4, 2020

Surfing and environmental experts gathered on the Gold Coast today to discuss potential new legal protections for Queensland’s World Surfing Reserves.

Queensland Minister for Sport Mick de Brenni encouraged discussion on how to legislate lasting protections for point and beach breaks around Noosa, and the ocean stretch from Snapper to Burleigh on the Gold Coast.

Minister de Brenni noted “this is a major step forward after Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk recently declared preservation of these iconic breaks as a top priority.

“Today is about hearing from a range of key international experts including marine and environmental scientists, and representatives from surfing, to discuss how we can protect our World Surfing Reserves for generations to come.

“Together we will start a conversation about what legislation will look like, citing other Australian and international case studies where successful protections have been put in place, including Bells Beach and in New Zealand.

“An independent discussion paper will then be compiled in time for our second roundtable meeting in July, after which community consultation will begin.”

Surfing Queensland Chief Executive Adam Yates said it made sense to enshrine the protections into law, as the coastal strips are recognised globally for their environmental significance.

Yates added “Surfers understand the vital importance of keeping our oceans clean and protecting our environments around it.

“For Queenslanders to remain competitive when it comes to winning Gold, we’ve got to have world class waves to train on.

“We want to encourage a range of perspectives to best define what legislation will look like, so that it has the right effect in conserving and protecting our truly remarkable surf zones.”

Chairman of the Gold Coast World Surfing Reserve Andrew McKinnon noted that the value of the Gold Coast World Surfing Reserve to its community was immeasurable highlighting “here on the Southern Gold Coast our beaches are part of our way of life.

 “They’re important in an environmental, tourism and economic sense but especially to the thousands of surfers, beachgoers and boaties who enjoy them every day.

"Legislation would preserve, protect and enhance our surfing amenity for everyone."

There are currently 11 World Surfing Reserves on the planet – places deemed globally important for preserving due to outstanding waves, wildlife, coastlines and natural beauty.

For more information, visit www.savethewaves.org

Image of Noosa Surf Breaks courtesy of Tourism and Events Queensland

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