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AUSMEPA eNewsletter Winter 2015

Newsletter highlights:

  • Julies Corner
    • AUSMEPA Environmental Award Now OPEN,
    • Port of Brisbane Silver,
  • For Teachers
    • Posters fly,
    • Help!,
    • Keep a look out,
  • For Students
    • KISS News flash,
    • Don't know where it goes? Recycling centres near you,
    • Dragon's Lair
  • For seafarers
    • AMSA's latest regulations to protect the Coral Sea
  • Sponsors and supporters
    • Rescue at sea,  
    • Grains Industry Conference,
    • Queensland Bulk Ports,
    • Sponsors unite
  • Ocean Whispers
    • Seagrass Blue Carbon Blues,
    • Climbing Perch stepping across Torres Strait,
    • Increased protection for Coral Sea,
    • Marine Activities for Primary School


http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-f9Ltdol5EI4/UBXpSa_4oXI/AAAAAAAAAgo/LKDdAzPv-hY/s320/20120726_150651.jpgAUSMEPA ENVIRONMENTAL AWARD for 2015 ... NOW OPEN
The AUSMEPA Environment Award is presented to worthy recipients to recognise and promote achievements, innovation and best practice in minimising marine pollution and the protection of the marine environment.

The Award may be given to individuals, community groups, businesses and government agencies or departments. Nominations are sought on an annual basis from the maritime community as well as AUSMEPA members. Nominations should be submitted in hard copy to:
PO Box 7122, SIPPY DOWNS, QLD 4556

and also by email to info@ausmepa.org.au by 30 September each year.
Nominations for the Environmental Award must meet the following criteria
and demonstrate a proactive approach;

  • Demonstrates innovation;
  • Provides a long term, sustainable solution to a particular issue or
  • Demonstrates actions that go beyond legal compliance, or beyond
    actions that are representative of the reasonable duties of a
    portfolio or position
  • The nominee should be based and operate in Australia and the
    benefits must be to the Australian marine environment

See here for a previous winner, the Port of Townsville 2010-2011


As Executive Officer I am proud to announce that the Port of Brisbane is our most recent SILVER Sponsor. The Port recognises the importance of the health of the marine environment and the education work undertaken by AUSMEPA and the other MEPAs around the world.

In turn, the AUSMEPA Board are pleased to acknowledge the high quality of the Port of Brisbane and welcome their assistance toward our goals in raising awareness, education and action with mariners as well as schools, teachers, students and communities in the Brisbane region.



The AUSMEPA poster packs keep flying off the shelves with another 52 requests being answered this week.  We are so glad that you love them but we need your help.

Teachers if you've been using our materials, posters, online units, and e-books or even our new Kid Investigating Sea Solutions we would LOVE some photos of what your students have accomplished and permission to share them on our website.

Occasionally we find teachers have spotted that odd typo that need to be corrected, send that along too.


QUEDREX 2015 - Poster LowR.pngTeachers, we are so happy that you have enjoyed and continue to enjoy using our free poster sets and we'd like to ask a favour. Can you please keep your eyes open for a request from Survey Monkey about our materials. It will help us to better serve your needs and provide information to our Board as to what you like, use, want and need. Thanks in advance!

A tremendous resource for teachers can be found at the annual Queensland Education Resources Expo (QUEDREX) being held on Saturday 25th and Sunday 26th July at the RICC Brisbane Showgrounds. Admission is free.


Kids who are investigating things that have to do with the ocean need to keep up with the latest. AUSMEPA has many ways to help you do this and our newest one is specially for you, our KISS News flash. For instance, did you know that June 7th was World Ocean Day?  

You can find our easy to read items here.

PLANET ARK has supported some great initiatives over the years since it started. One enduring example is their promotion of the RecyclingNearYou.com.au website. On this webpage you merely select your state, provide your suburb, council name, and postcode and you can even select from a wide range of particular products to be recycled. It's worth exploring.

There is little more exciting than finding a grotto or cave in a rocky reef when diving or snorkelling. It begs for its mysteries to be discovered.
This KISS CRAFT project, ROCKY REEF,  centres around one of Australia's iconic fish, the Leafy Sea Dragon, Phycodurus eques.  This seahorse relative is a graceful creature who moves slowly and relies on their leafy appendages to camouflage them from discovery by predators. The Leafy Seadragon is also the state fish of South Australia and is found across the southern coastline of Australia. View the link here for more information on how to use repurposed and recycled materials to build your own grotto.


Below find the official government media release regarding the international agreement for greater protection related to shipping routes.

Government expands protection for the Coral Sea
Media Release   WT146/2015   16 May 2015

The International Maritime Organization (IMO) has agreed to the Australian Government's proposed extension of the Great Barrier Reef and Torres Strait Particularly Sensitive Sea Area (PSSA) to protect the South West Coral Sea.

Overnight the IMO Marine Environment Protection Committee in London agreed to the new arrangements, which will see an additional 565,000 square kilometres of the South-West Coral Sea added to the existing Great Barrier Reef and Torres strait PSSA—a 140% increase on the current 403,000 square kilometres.

Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Infrastructure and Regional Development Warren Truss said the adoption of the new PSSA will better protect this beautiful and unique oceanic region.

"The Coral Sea is one of the world's most distinctive and undisturbed marine ecosystems," Mr Truss said.

"It behoves us to do all we can to reasonably and responsibly protect one of our greatest natural resources.

"Our new measures enhance protection for the Coral Sea—as well as the adjacent Great Barrier Reef World Heritage area—by helping ships traverse the region safely and avoid potentially hazardous areas.

"This is a concrete example of the Australian Government taking the necessary steps to protect the Great Barrier Reef, implementing measures outlined in the North East Shipping Management Plan released in October 2014."

Designation as a PSSA helps to protect seas where significant ecological, socio-economic or scientific attributes may be vulnerable to damage by international shipping. The Great Barrier Reef was declared the world's first PSSA in 1990.

Three Associated Protective Measures will support the new PSSA, including a new Area to be Avoided and two supporting two-way routes. These measures will enhance ship safety by keeping traffic away from the many reefs, cays, islets, sandbars and shoal patches within the area. This reduces the risk of groundings and allows more time for intervention in developing situations, such as a ship suffering a mechanical breakdown.

The PSSA will come into effect once the Associated Protective Measures are adopted by the IMO Maritime Safety Committee, expected in June. The APMs would come into effect six months later.

The Australian Maritime Safety Authority (AMSA) represents Australia at the IMO to develop standards for ship safety, prevention of marine pollution from ships, search and rescue and maritime communications.

For more information on the new PSSA, AMSA has produced a 7:18 minute video detailing the proposal. Watch on YouTube at: https://youtu.be/KvEx6FDllJU



One of AUSMEPAs firm supporters and sponsors, Sun Enterprises, has reported that on 14th of March 2015 one of the tankers under its management, M/T AXIOS, was involved in a successful rescue at sea of 24 persons, including the crew of the fishing vessel SHOFOKU MARU NO 78.

The fishing boat was in distress and on fire. The crew had abandoned it for a life raft north west of Dampier, Western Australia, when the tanker, under instructions from RCC Australia, rescued 6 Japanese and 18 Indonesians on the boat.

The vessel diverted from his original destination to Port Headland, Western Australia, where all survivors disembarked in good health into the hands of the proper authorities.


Come and visit us at the Australian Grains Industry Conference here in Melbourne 27‐29th July 2015. AUSMEPA sponsors Holman Fenwick Willan have kindly donated some space in their exhibition booth. This way AUSMEPA will provide an opportunity to show our amazing array or resources and encourage new sponsorship opportunities to a different industry that relies on shipping and ports in Australia's prestigious waters.


North Queensland Bulk Ports have been supportive sponsors, from their annual Gold Sponsorship, to extra sponsorship dollars on various projects that have involved local schools in Hay Point & Bowen with our Calendar competition with the focus on Mangroves; to the Weipa area for our Junior Rangers Guidebook development and we thank them very much. This year they are focusing on Seagrass monitoring at the Port of Weipa. This video clip is highly recommended https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tcH06kjEvCo


In December 2014 two of AUSMEPA's Ship Member sponsors, SMIT and PB Towage have joined to become SMIT Lamnalco. Smit Lamnalco is recognised as a world leader in marine services. They have the  ability to expand and operate to the highest standards in challenging locations. They can make arrangements for specialised vessels to suit most marine services. The company is fully committed to maximizing the local content of our operations.


Ocean Whispers is the AUSMEPA blog for schools and seafarers and can be found here. The items are generally dedicated to keeping our environment healthy and draw on information within the organisation and from the wider world. A few recent articles are:

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