Australia: Rethink Abbot Point Development, Experts Say

Almost 600 of the world’s experts in tropical biology and conservation have called on the Australian Government to reconsider the extended port development at Abbot Point, out of concern for the future of the Great Barrier Reef.

The 51st annual meeting of the Association for Tropical Biology and Conservation (ATBC) has issued a declaration on behalf of 589 scientists and conservationists from 55 nations.

The declaration applauds Australia’s achievements in protecting the Great Barrier Reef (GBR) and its biota, and urges continued leadership and stronger protection.

The Declaration urges the Australian Government to:

– seriously consider the cumulative impacts of port development on the GBR lagoon;

– reconsider the need for the extended development at Abbot point, in light of the environmental cost.

Should the development go ahead, the scientists argue that any marine dumping of dredge spoil must be avoided.

The meeting of world experts has expressed concern about the feasibility of the offset requirement, which provides for a reduction in net sediment input into the GBR Marine Park.

If the development goes ahead, they ask that the Australian Government:

– provide cost details on options for achieving the offset requirement;

– provide confirmation that the development’s proponents are willing to meet these costs;

– provide a process to ensure that the offset requirement is being met and is effective as a mitigation effort.

The conference has also called on Australia to maintain a scientifically robust program for monitoring water quality in catchment rivers and the inshore GBR regions, to track progress towards the recovery and protection of a healthy GBR.

The ATBC, whose membership includes academics, researchers and representatives of NGOs, is meeting in Australia for the first time, hosted by James Cook University.

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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