ITAC discusses Townsville Channel Upgrade plan

The Independent Technical Advisory Committee (ITAC) met yesterday to discuss the Port of Townsville’s $193 million Channel Upgrade project.

The ITAC consists of marine experts who provide independent advice and input on the environmental monitoring programs, management plans and mitigation strategies.

Consequently, ITAC Chair, Dr Brett Kettle, said that one of the important functions of the ITAC was to voice an independent perspective for the community if it has concerns about the project or its monitoring programs, as the Port prepares to begin capital dredging of Townsville’s shipping channel in early 2021.

“If members of the public have specific concerns about the environmental performance of the dredging, they should feel absolutely free to raise it with myself and I will bring it before the ITAC,” said Dr Kettle.

To date, the ITAC’s role has focused on providing advice about the impacts of marine construction on flora and fauna, etc.

“As we move into the dredging phase, the ITAC’s work will come to focus on a review of the data being gathered via various monitoring programs,” Dr Kettle said.

ITAC session will cover:

  • introduction to the ITAC members;
  • overview of the Channel Upgrade project to date;
  • update on the Port’s environmental monitoring programs;
  • future actions to be undertaken by the ITAC.

The Townsville Port Channel Upgrade is a joint project of the Queensland and Australian governments, and the Port of Townsville.

Moreover, the project forms part of the City Deal signed in December 2016.

Photo: Port of Townsville