Survey probes boaties green sense

A SURVEY for boaters and fishers has been released to gather information about environmental education strategies.

The survey was issued by the Northern Rivers Catchment Management Authority and seeks boaters’ knowledge on environmental issues and how they prefer to receive information.

Northern Rivers CMA catchment officer Mark Asquith said the survey also sought to find out what encouraged people to protect waterways.

“The survey results will assist in identifying where we should focus our efforts in developing new or additional educational materials and opportunities for users,” he said.

Almost 600 people have answered the survey so far.

“This is a great response, however we are keen to hear from more boaters and fishers in the Mid-North and Far North Coast region,” Mr Asquith said.

New South Wales Boat Owners’ Association president Michael Chapman said the survey was a beneficial tool to educate boat owners and users on anchoring and removing rubbish from the shore. But Mr Chapman said questions had to be worded to avoid placing assumed blame on the boaters doing the wrong thing.

“Most boaters are responsible and respect the natural environment and go boating to enjoy it,” he said.

The questions test the boaters’ understanding of sea grass beds, shoreline vegetation and boat wakes, among other topics.

“Unless the water is at utmost clarity you wouldn’t know if you were anchoring on sea grass,” Mr Chapman said.

The survey can be found at www.surveymonkey.com/s/MTTKMDC and the closing date is February 16.

Participants could win a $200 voucher from a boating or fishing tackle store.



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