Penong Bight group to start Attenborough campaign

CAMPAIGNER: Catrina Spitzkowsky is hoping to reach out to Sir David Attenborough through the 'Have A Go For the Bro' campaign.
CAMPAIGNER: Catrina Spitzkowsky is hoping to reach out to Sir David Attenborough through the 'Have A Go For the Bro' campaign.

A local group campaigning to prevent oil drilling in the Great Australian Bight plans to reach out to a famous conversationalist to let him know they plan to protect his favourite animal.

Penong based ‘Stop All Drilling Save Our Bight’ is starting a campaign ‘Have a Go For the Bro’ to reach out to nature documentarian Sir David Attenborough.

Group founding member Catrina Spitzkowsky said the campaign wanted to reach out to Mr Attenborough to show they wanted to protect South Australia’s marine life, including an animal he has expressed a fondness for.

“He stated at the start of the year his favourite animal in the world is the leafy sea dragon,” she said.

“Because he’s done so much as an environmentalist and naturalist, and he has given so much to our children, we want him to know we’ll do all in our power to protect the habitat of the leafy sea dragon.”

A petition went live on Change.org on Tuesday for people to pledge their support.

Ms Spitzkowsky said people could sign the petition to show they supported the Bight being left alone for the native sea life.

She said the group was also planning to write a letter asking for support from Queen Elizabeth II.

“She is known as the ‘Green Queen’ and her kids and grand kids are all environmentalists,” she said.

Ms Spitzkowsky said the group’s efforts would start with Eyre Peninsula focus but hoped it would spread across Australia.

The group is also planning to reach out to local fishermen who Ms Spitzkowsky said “had the most to lose” from a potential oil spill.

One former commercial fisherman, Streaky Bay born Errol Tyrell, has expressed his own concerns about oil drilling in the Great Australian Bight.

“When you’ve got a massive swell going out there, you’re looking at swells of up to five to 10 metres,” Mr Tyrell said.

“What mainly concerns everybody is what happens when they have a spill, how can they get a crew out there to contain the spill in those conditions.”