A six-month trial of traditional shark nets on the Mid North Coast may soon be deployed with legislation to be introduced in Parliament on 24 November 2016.
The announcement follows a recent shark attack near Byron Bay in which a man suffered injuries to his thigh.
The proposed legislation streamlines an approvals process, which is currently spread across various NSW Acts. The Commonwealth's Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999 will continue to apply.
NSW Minister for Primary Industries Niall Blair said the proposed legislation will regulate mesh nets on the North Coast so that a trial can commence as soon as possible.
“No one measure can stop shark attacks, but this trial of traditional nets will complement our existing $16 million Shark Management Strategy, and help reduce the risk of further attacks," Mir Blair said.
“Marine life is important, which is why DPI’s world-leading fisheries experts are investigating how mesh nets might be improved to avoid unnecessary entanglements, but protecting human life is our first priority.”
The NSW Department of Primary Industries is procuring nets and negotiating with contractors, to allow immediate roll-out following the passage of the legislation through the NSW Parliament.