AMCS Response to Dawson MP’s Comments on the Reef

The Australian Marine Conservation Society (AMCS) has questioned comments made by Federal Member for Dawson, Mr George Christensen MP, about the Senate Committee Inquiry into the management of the Great Barrier Reef, his colleagues and constituents.

Felicity Wishart, Great Barrier Reef Campaign Director, said Mr Christensen’s reported comments that the process was stacked with environmental extremists, and that the government would ignore the Committee’s report anyway, were offensive to everyone who gave evidence and the democratic process.

It seems anyone who disagrees with Mr Christensen is dubbed an extremist,” Ms Wishart said.

This week, farmers, fishers, tourism operators and local community members took time out from their work, and made the tough decision to speak to the Inquiry about the impacts of dumping dredge spoil in the Great Barrier Reef. For that they were heckled by their local MP.”

We call on Mr Christensen to play the ball, not the men and women of the region, and address the serious issues presented to the Senate Committee. Address the concerns of tourism operators over water quality and their livelihoods; address the concerns of fishers,” added Wishart.

Tourism operators and fishers made it very clear that they weren’t against mining, port expansion or development. But they are concerned about plans to dump millions of tonnes of dredge spoil in the Reef’s waters.

Their greatest concern is that sea dumping is an outdated practice, which will add unnecessary pressure to an already stressed Reef. They are uncertain about the future of their businesses and feel deeply frustrated that their concerns are falling on deaf ears.

For Mr Christensen to also comment that the government will simply ignore the Senate’s report is offensive to the LNP, ALP and Greens Senators who are compiling the report, particularly Liberal Senator Anne Ruston who welcomed the community members’ evidence.

It holds a mirror to Mr Christensen as the local member, suggesting that he isn’t interested in the facts, the science or the impact that dredging and dumping can have on the Reef and people’s lives.

Mr Christensen needs to show more respect for our democratic process and start by acknowledging the concerns of his constituency. He might even come to realise that the Reef is in fact in dire straits as most scientists are saying, and that action to increase its protection is urgently needed,” Wishart said.

Press Release, July 25, 2014

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3rd International Congress Hydraulic Engineering Structures and Dredging

Russia’s leading maritime industry Media Group PortNews (www.portnews.ru) holds a traditional annual Congress “Hydraulic Engineering Structures and Dredging” in Moscow. 

The two-day Congress includes the 7th International Forum of Dredging Companies and the 3rd Technical Conference “Modern Solutions for Hydraulic Engineering”.

Infrastructure development is among the real sources of Russia’s economy growth. Construction of port facilities and new hydraulic engineering structures on the country’s inland waterways constitute an essential part of all infrastructure projects. It is important to take into account the best international practices to implement these projects effectively.

The program of the Congress will be devoted to the latest technologies for dredging and hydraulic engineering works. Speakers and delegates will refer to real projects to discuss specifics features of dredging works, as well as dedicated fleet and equipment involved.

To learn more about event, please, contact the organizing committee: snitko@portnews.ru

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