Australia: Great Barrier Reef Port Strategy Opens for Public Comment
The Queensland Government has just released the draft Great Barrier Reef Port Strategy for public comment.
Deputy Premier Seeney has stated that: ‘We will confine future development to the existing major ports where there is considerable scope for future development at Abbot Point, at Dudgeon Point in the Port of Hay Point and at several locations such as Balaclava Island, Port Alma in the Port of Gladstone.’
“We are horrified at this statement,” said CCC Coordinator Michael McCabe.
“Keppel Bay does not have a major existing port. Port Alma is a very minor old port for specialised cargo only. Balaclava Island and Sea Hill Curtis Island have no development whatsoever.”
“More to the point, Balaclava Island and Port Alma are not “in the Port of Gladstone” at all. Minister Seeney should have a good look at a map of Queensland.”
“Residents on the Capricorn Coast have made it very plain that they oppose any port development in Keppel Bay. These developments would threaten the unique environmental values of the Fitzroy Delta, including habitat for fish breeding and the extremely rare Australian Snubfin Dolphin and the endangered Yellow Chat.”
“The Newman government is using trickery to get its hands on Keppel Bay. Their port strategy shows contempt for UNESCO World Heritage Area and GBR Strategic Assessment that no new port developments should be allowed in the Great Barrier Reef area apart from at existing major established ports,” said Mr McCabe.
Press Release, November 1, 2012; Image: westernbasinportdevelopment