The no-take area includes Astrolabe reef, Brewis Shoal, Okaparu reef, Schooner Rock, Tokoroa Shoal, Plate Island and other substantial areas around these reefs and Motiti Island.
Collectively these areas represent over 50% of the safely accessible reef structures for local recreational and charter anglers exiting Tauranga and Maketu.
A large percentage of Motiti residents strongly oppose the proposal.
No consultation was undertaken with recreational fishers, divers and spear fishermen as well as many other interested stakeholders.
No robust scientific data was provided to support the proposal.
No consideration has been given to other methods to reduce an perceived pressure on the area in question.
The Fisheries Act, containing the quota management system is a more appropriate tool to manage this fishery.
The Resource Management Act was never intended to control a fishery.
No allowance has been made for the major impact that the deflected fishing pressure will have on adjacent areas, this will be significant.
Adjacent iwi and hapu strongly object to the proposal and will be resisting it.
There are massive implications for the creation of similar coastal reserves NZ wide. Motiti is just the first example of a process that will be rolled out nation-wide.