Territory Stories

Ecologically sustainable development in the Darwin Harbour Region : review of governance frameworks



Ecologically sustainable development in the Darwin Harbour Region : review of governance frameworks

Other title

Environment Protection Agency.


Environment Protection Agency (Northern Territory); Northern Territory. Department Of Lands, Planning And Environment


E-Publications; E-Books; PublicationNT





Table of contents

Executive summary -- Introduction -- 1. Background -- 1.1 Terms of reference -- 1.2 Scope and structure of the review -- 1.3 Ecologically sustainable development and governance -- 1.4 Ecologically sustainable development, principles and criteria -- 1.5 The Darwin Harbour Region -- 2. Ecologically sustainable development in legislation, policies and plans -- 2.1 Strategic development and management -- 2.2 Land use -- 2.3 Minerals, extractive materials and petroleum -- 2.4 Ports -- 2.5 Pollution, waste and public health -- 2.6 Water -- 2.7 Fisheries and marine areas -- 2.8 Biodiversity, heritage and natural resource management -- 2.9 Environmental assessment -- 3. Discussion and findings -- 4. Advice.




Darwin Harbour -- Environmental aspects; Environmental management -- Northern Territory -- Darwin Harbour

Publisher name

Environment Protection Agency

Place of publication



vii, 59 p. : col. ills. ; 30 cm.

File type




Copyright owner

Environment Protection Agency



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Page content

40 2.7 Fisheries and Marine Areas Darwin Harbour is a primary resource used by both commercial and recreational fishermen in the Northern Territory. As industrialisation and urbanisation around the area expands, increasing pressure on the resource and strong cultural ties to certain fish and marine species are driving the need for sustainable management. This legislative framework for this sector is discussed in terms of fisheries and marine area management and marine pollution. Fisheries and Marine Area Management Legislation The Fisheries Act and Fisheries Regulations make up the legislative framework applicable to management of fisheries in the harbour. Key elements of this framework include the requirement for licensing of aquaculture and commercial fishing operations, the creation of an offence where these activities are undertaken without a licence, the imposition of amateur fishing limits (relating to the number, size and weight of fish, methods of fishing used, types and amounts of fishing gear allowed, and times when fishing can and cannot take place), and provision for Fishery Management Areas (FMAs). Once such an area is declared there is a statutory requirement that a plan of management is prepared. ESD The Fisheries Act specifically lists ESD within its objectives, stating that one of the objects of the Act is to manage the aquatic resources of the Territory in accordance with the principles of ecologically sustainable development (Section 2A). There is no