North Queensland’s Mackay Marina Village & Shipyard, winner of the 2013-2014 Marina of the Year award, has today been awarded ‘Fish Friendly’ accreditation – the first marina in Queensland to be certified with this status as part of the International Clean Marina program coordinated by the Marina Industries Association (MIA).
The certification focuses on the development and promotion of marina fish habits and was first developed by the NSW Department of Primary Industries in collaboration with the MIA and the NSW Boating Industry Association.
Colin Bransgrove, Executive Director of the MIA said 'marinas can provide important habitat for fish. Fish Friendly Marinas has been developed to inform marina managers on how to maximise the benefits of marinas for fish and to recognise those operators actively working to improve fish habitat. Fish Friendly Marinas provides advice and supporting material to help marina operators incorporate beneficial outcomes for native fish into their existing operational plans, such as ensuring their marina is free from marine pests and providing habitat for native fish. A ‘10 Tips’ publication has also been produced to inform operators and help them communicate their efforts to clients and visitors.'
The initiative is attached to MIA’s International Clean Marinas Program which promotes positive environmental standards and practices at marinas. Additional fish friendly criteria and an audit are requirements to achieve Fish Friendly Marina accreditation.
Colin Bransgrove said the roll out of the initiative is an important development. 'Marinas are the ideal location for many community members to see and learn about native fish and the aquatic environment. Clean Marinas and the Fish Friendly accreditation add-on demonstrate that industry, with support from government, is best able to set the standards that meet and exceed community and government expectations.'
Marina Manager, Ben Anderson said 'We are proud to be accredited with this new environmental initiative at Mackay Marina Village. We are committed to ensuring our facility is of the highest environmental standard through participation in programs such as Clean Marinas. Mackay Marina Village has fully embraced the opportunity to meet the Fish Friendly criteria.'
More at www.marinas.net.au