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Byron Shire
March 4, 2021

Straw ghosts

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Missing teen – Tweed Heads

Police are appealing for public assistance to locate a boy reported missing from Tweed Heads.

Other News

Storylines: Uluru Statement from the Heart

The 'Uluru Statement from the Heart' seeks constitutional reform to empower Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples to have a say and be involved over matters that impact their lives.

Transparency needed

Janelle Saffin MP, State Member for Lismore. I read with interest Mia Armitage’s front page article in last week’s Echo...

Lennox Rise development clears another hurdle

The massive new residential development planned west of Epiq in Lennox Head continued its progress towards becoming reality at the last Ballina Shire Council meeting.

Blue-green algae amber alert still active at Uki

Last Thursday Tweed Shire Council issued an amber alert for blue-green algae in the Tweed River at Uki, with Clarrie Hall Dam remaining on a green alert. This morning they say the alerts are still active.

Soli becalmed in NSW Pro surf series

Local surfer Soli Bailey has finished in second place at the Mad Mex Maroubra Pro World Surf League Qualifying Series event held at Sydney’s Maroubra beach last weekend.

PM forced

Narelle Rendalls, Ballina With reference to the recent serious sexual assault allegations in Canberra, our Prime Minister has a lot to...

Desmond Bellamy, PETA Australia

The war on straws seems to be going well, with McDonald’s announcing that they will phase out the use of plastic straws by 2020.

But, if you are concerned with keeping animals in the ocean safe, don’t just look to your drinking straw – look to your dinner plate. In fact, eating fish does far more harm to our oceans than sipping your drink through a straw ever will.

Abandoned, lost or discarded fishing gear – otherwise known as ‘ghost gear’ – is a problem that spells catastrophe for marine life. At least 640,000 tonnes of ghost gear are added to our oceans every year, killing and mutilating millions of marine animals – including endangered whales, seals and turtles. Swallowing plastic remnants from ghost gear leads to malnutrition, digestive blockages and death.

In the Pacific Ocean there is a floating patch of garbage twice the size of France and weighing roughly 88,000 tonnes. While this enormous area, like our oceans at large, is full of plastic, scientists estimate that 46 per cent of the mass of the garbage patch comes from fishing nets alone. And other types of fishing gear account for much of the rest.

So, while many people are stocking up on cloth shopping bags and signing petitions to ban single-use plastic straws to save the oceans, those who fish (or eat fish) need to re-examine their personal choices too. It’s simple: less fishing means less fishing gear abandoned.

You can’t eat fish and call yourself an environmentalist.


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