POLL: Should the North Coast get mesh shark nets?
THE discussion surrounding protection strategies from sharks on the North Coast has turned to the solution of mesh shark nets, but how do locals really feel about this option?
Yesterday NSW Premier Mike Baird announced that he would be asking the Federal Government for a six month trial of shark nets in the Far North NSW Coast beaches.
"The ongoing question has been, what about nets?" Mr Baird said.
"Opponents of nets rightly point to the fact they can also kill dolphins, turtles and other marine life.
"And no one wants that. But supporters will point out the fact they have effectively protected beaches from Wollongong to Newcastle for decades.
"Although the North Coast community isn't unanimous about this, the feedback we get is that the sentiment has shifted, people have had enough of the shark attacks and are now determined to trial nets.
Do you want a trial of mesh shark nets on the Northern Rivers?
This poll ended on 14 October 2016.
This is not a scientific poll. The results reflect only the opinions of those who chose to participate.
"Local businesses have been suffering - especially in tourism - and as we approach summer, people want us to take action.
"Yes, I remain conscious of the environmental concerns but, ultimately, protecting human life has to remain the Government's priority.
"We are hoping to have the nets rolled out shortly.
"And we will continue to engage with the local communities on the North Coast as the trial of shark nets goes ahead this summer.
Ballina MP Tamara Smith from the Greens has voiced her opposition to the proposal.
"I call on the Premier of New South Wales to fund a shark spotting program by local group Shark Watch and to invest in developing technologies that go with surfers to improve their safety," she said.
"I ask the Premier to consider the safety of all ocean users and to fund non-lethal methods such as shark spotting instead of thinking only about his poll numbers and trying to win the next election."