The Australian Greens said today they were concerned that a loophole may be created that still allows Colin Barnett to deploy drumlines off WA beaches.
"I think the Federal Government would most likely have rejected the Premier's application before it was withdrawn at one minute to midnight," Senator Rachel Siewert, Australian Greens marine spokesperson said today.
"There are now serious questions that need to be asked about the so-called agreement that has been reached between the Federal and State Governments that might allow drum lines to be deployed in the case of 'imminent threats'.
"The Premier has said that if a large shark was sighted that is a threat to public safety, the state could use drum lines as one of the measures to remove it, but both the he and the Environment Minister have admitted that details are still being worked through, leaving too much ambiguity about the policy.
"The people of WA do not support a shark cull under any guise.
"I don't want to see a backdoor created that gives the WA Government permission to set drum lines and kill sharks without any involvement of the Commonwealth.
"Minister Hunt and Premier Barnett need to clearly outline the imminent threat conditions so they can be properly scrutinised.
"I'm very happy the broad cull policy is not going ahead, but I remain wary of any Federal Government moves to devolve responsibilities for the environment to the States, especially to a Premier who has shown such little regard for them in the past.
"Recent figures show the devastating effect that drum lines are having on sharks and marine life in Queensland. It is time to reassess the programs in Queensland and NSW as those old practices cause too much damage and more ecologically sound practices should be put in place.
"There should be a State and Federal focus on policies to protect marine life and address safety without focusing on drum lines," Senator Siewert concluded.