Walter Starck's Blog

Walter Starck has a PhD in marine science including post-graduate training and professional experience in fisheries biology.

His reef experience includes some 50 years of fishing and diving on coral reefs including those in the eastern, western and central Pacific areas as well as the Indian Ocean and tropical western Atlantic region.

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Letters may be published online or in one or more of Baird Maritime or Ausmarine magazine.

Dredging up another bogus threat
Tuesday, 10 December 2013 15:30
The coal terminal at Queensland's Port of Gladstone

Plans to dredge Queensland ports are under attack by the usual suspects, who have brought to bear their customary arsenal of faux science, outrageous misrepresentation and emotional manipulation.

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Government by NGO
Tuesday, 08 January 2013 16:13

The dictionary defines 'stakeholder' as "a person or group that has a financial investment, share, or other significant personal interest in some thing or activity." In law such status is recognised by the concept of legal standing (locus standi) and it requires the ability to demonstrate sufficient connection to a matter to be potentially harmed by the legal outcome. There is a well-established body of law which recognises a right to have a voice in affairs which affect us personally; but, we have no right to interfere in matters remote from ourselves which are, in effect, none of our business.

However, almost without notice, environmentalism has redefined the fundamental concept of being a stakeholder in Australia. Despite having nothing invested and with no risk to themselves, environmental Non-government organisations (NGOs) have managed to claim the status of stakeholders in remote matters and be accorded an equal voice to those whose entire lives, livelihood and assets are being affected.

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Opinion: Trawler brings up catch of stupidity
Tuesday, 18 September 2012 17:13

Australia has the third largest fisheries zone in the world and the lowest harvest rate, at only about three per cent of the global average. We import 70 per cent of the seafood we eat, all of it from resources far more heavily impacted than our own. This is unconscionable. We pay for it by selling off non-renewable mineral resources and call it sustainable management. This is moronic.

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UNESCO, butt out!
Friday, 13 July 2012 17:07

The Reef is in excellent condition

A recent report by the UNESCO World Heritage Committee, dated 1 June 2012, expresses great concern over threats to the Great Barrier Reef (GBR) from coastal development, poor water quality and climate change. It states that: "there are a number of developments that, were they to proceed, would provide the basis to consider the inscription of the property on the List of World Heritage in Danger."The response to this report from the legions of eco-righteousness might best be described as delighted, with the news media and environmental groups widely presenting it an important problem demanding forceful action by government."

However, like all such concerns about “threats” to the GBR, these are all only hypothetical possibilities that might occur but with no evidence to indicate that anything detrimental is actually happening.

In reality the reef is in near-pristine natural condition.

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MPAs - A useless solution to a non-problem
Monday, 23 May 2011 13:16

Australia: MPAs (marine protected areas) are an ill-considered and expensive idea that address no demonstrated problem. Bypassing full parliamentary scrutiny while permitting a single minister to exercise personal discretion in implementing a vast, costly, unneeded network of them is gross misgovernance.

The claim that international treaty obligations require establishment of the planned MPAs is untrue. Pandering for Green votes is the only real purpose.

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