Letter of Support for Great Keppel Island

To: <>
Subject: Letter of Support for Great Keppel Island
From: "John Harris" <>
Date: Mon, 17 Mar 2008 12:41:01 +1100
Dear All
I just received this email, asking for support for The Great Keppel Island Lot 
21 Environment Group's opposition to a proposed development of GKI.  Part of 
the proposal is at the bottom of this message.  It includes 2 18 Hole Golf 
Courses, a 500 berth Marina, 1300 housing blocks and 1300 apartments and a 2km 

With a wide range of birds including Beach Stone Curlews, turtle breeding areas 
and other natural features, a development proposal like the one below would 
devastate much of the natural beauty of the island.

Hello to all the people who would like to see Great Keppel Island protected
for future generations,

If you look out to sea from mainland Australia in Central Queensland, you
will see the lovely outline of Great Keppel Island, with its wooded ridges
and fringing reefs. It is the Iconic island of the Capricorn Coast. Most of
what you see is a "Recreational Lease" (officially Lot 21, SP192569, on Dept
of Nat Resources and Water Maps) This lease doesn't cover the commercial
part of Keppel - i.e. the Western Settlement where the resort and businesses
are, but covers most of the rest of the island. According to the current
lease, which expires in March 2010, this is a Recreational Lease which
allows you and all other peoples access to walk over this lovely island and
do your birdwatching, freshwater turtle watching, bushwalking, kayaking, or
simply to walk and sit in the shade of the lovely gum trees on your way to a
secluded bay for snorkelling.

Once a lease is 80% complete - and this one will be 80% complete on 31st
March 2008 - in 3 weeks, then any "interested parties" can put a submission
to the Dept of Natural Resources to tell the Dept what they want to happen
to the lease in the future.

We have formed a steering group (The Great Keppel Island Lot 21 Environment
Group) to lobby hard to have Lot 21 made into some kind of Conservation or
environmental park - something that will protect the island from any
possible development in the future. (See attachment ) We have written a
submission saying why we think GKI is worth protecting from future
development. (see attachment 1)

The more support we get for our submission, the more likely it is that we,
and not any possible developer, will be successful.

We need you to write a submission supporting us. It doesn't have to be very
long - but letters of support from both individuals and Groups would be most
welcome. We need as many people supporting this as possible.

Why do you want to see Great Keppel Island protected? Is it to protect the
Aboriginal cultural sites? Or the underground water that the trees will need
in the future (the aquifer under the western settlement has failed due to
over use and has become saline - we don't want to see that happening to the
other aquifers under Lot 21. DO you want to see the trees, reptiles, animals
(did you know we have the most beautiful tiny marsupial mice here?), and
birdlife protected,(we have a rare beach curlew as well as the better known
stone curlew here on the island) Imagine if we had 2600 apartments,
townhouses and residences here - each with its cat and dog and motorcar -
what would that mean for the birds, reptiles and animals? Would you like to
see the island remain cane toad free? (increased traffic to the island is
likely to introduce these horrible pests like it did on Magnetic Island and
all the Torres Straits islands). Do you fear that development would lead to
landclearing for housing blocks, shopping centres, roads etc, which would
have a detrimental effect due to runoff and siltation on our beaches and
fringing reefs, which have suffered 4 major bleaching events in 1998, 2002,
2004, and 2005, and now need all the protection they can get? Did you know
that GKI is a turtle nesting island with Flatback and Green turtles nesting
on the beaches here in some numbers?

Please write us a letter of support. Say who you are (your name, or your
group's name and your address), say that you are writing about Lot 21 on
Great Keppel Island. Say why you or your group would like to see it
protected into the future.

We are hoping to get 100's of letters of support.  We feel quite optimistic
about this. We have already had dozens of people and groups contact us to
offer support. Please take an hour to do this for the island's many
creatures, and for your and future generations' continued access to and
enjoyment of Great Keppel Island's natural ecology.

Please could you send 2 copies of your letter, with as many signatures as
possible to

The Great Keppel Island Lot 21 Environment Group,

C.M.B. Gt Keppel Island

QLD 4700.

 Or, if you really can't post a letter to us, email one to us at the
following address  ) I will print and mail the letters to
the Minister: (it really needs your signature )

The Hon Craig Wallace, Minister Of Natural Resources and Water and Minister
assisting the Premier in North Queensland.

Dept of Environment and Heritage, and Dept of Primary Industries,

Thank you,

Carl Svendsen

Chairman, Great Keppel Island Lot 21 Environment Group.

Extracts from A Development Plan by a developer for Great Keppel Island, 
proposed 18th July 2007.

Housing Subdivision

This will consist of a land and housing development consisting of approximately 
one thousand three hundred lots and private residences. A series of roads 
across the island will provide access to land suitable for housing development. 
The lots will be located adjacent to beaches or on elevated land across the 

Town houses and Apartments

Approximately one thousand three hundred residential apartments and town houses 
(up to three storeys high) located adjacent to Long Beach Golf course

An Airstrip

The Airstrip will be 2km in length and capable of handling passenger jets 
operating direct flights from Melbourne, Sydney, Brisbane and Cairns. The 
airstrip will be built on undeveloped land between Clam Bay and Leeke?s Beach.

A 500- berth Marina

The marina and associated facilities * is to be located at Putney Beach which 
give good protection from the prevailing south easterly winds.

Two championship 18 hole golf courses

These golf courses will be developed on sand dunes between Sandhill Beach and 
Wreck Beach, and at Long Beach incorporating the existing airstrip.

Three new 250 bed hotels

These hotels are to be located at Fisherman?s Beach, Svendsen?s Beach and 
Leeke?s Beach. These hotels will provide high quality accommodation and guest 
facilities in prime development locations adjacent to three of the best beaches 
on GKI

A Retail Village adjacent to the marina

Yours in all things "green"


John Harris
President, Victorian Association for Environmental Education (VAEE)
Environmental Education Officer
Donvale Christian College
155 Tindals Rd Donvale 3111
03 9844 2471
0409 090 955

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