The event is a great deal for threatened species
Allens has helped WWF-Australia reach a milestone.
The top firm aided the environmental organisation in buying and retiring the last full-time commercial fishing gill net on the northern Great Barrier Reef.
The purchase brings to an end commercial net fishing in the Princess Charlotte Bay region north of Cairns, the firm said. Fishers have only been able to fish with nets in the area if they hold a historical commercial license.
WWF has bought the last commercial license in operation for an undisclosed six-figure sum, which was raised from the community.
The area, a habitat of the dugong and other threatened species, is part of the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park.
“Nearly three thousand people chipped in to raise the six-figure sum needed to purchase the commercial fishing licence which will now be retired, along with the 600-metre long gill net,” said Dermot O'Gorman, WWF-Australia CEO. “It’s a great deal for dugongs, so we want to say thank you Allens for pro-bono legal support on an unusual and novel transaction.”
The work continues Allens’ pro bono efforts for Great Barrier Reef conservation.
Felicity Rourke, Allens partner, said that collaborating with WWF-Australia to find a creative solution to a complex problem was very rewarding for the firm’s team.