Penrhyn Estuary, Sydney under further threat !

Subject: Penrhyn Estuary, Sydney under further threat !
From: Tun Pin Ong <>
Date: Tue, 4 Jul 2006 03:33:38 -0700 (PDT)
There was an article from Sydney Morning Herald last
week about further development on the Penrhyn Estuary.

On Sunday I counted 4 overstaying Red-necked Stints
among many Double-banded Sandplovers. Also a
Bar-tailed Godwit in breeding plumage.

It was not only dogs and children that had caused
disturbance to the roosting waders. Even a couple who
strolled on the beach walked right through the sand
bank and had dispersed all the small waders that were
roosting there.

Looks like the site will be gone in near future. What
a pity.

Tun-Pin Ong
StLeonards,North Sydney
Port Botany muscles in on sensitive expansion site
Email Print Normal font Large font Sherrill Nixon
Urban Affairs Editor
June 28, 2006

AdvertisementPORT BOTANY'S second stage of expansion
should be to the north of the port, close to the
already fragile Penrhyn Estuary, says an expert panel
that has chosen the cheapest but most environmentally
damaging option.

The panel's report recommends that a fifth berth be
built at the northern end of the $750 million,
51-hectare, four-berth port expansion announced by the
Premier, Morris Iemma, last October.

The "northern option" would cost only $36 million,
compared with options to the east and west of the
stage-one expansion which would have cost more than
$200 million.

The experts said the northern expansion was best
because it would allow more freight to be carried in
and out of the port by rail, required the least
roadworks and was most likely to attract a third
stevedoring company to compete against the present
operators, Patrick and P & O Ports.

But it came with a "small environmental trade-off",
said the report's authors, the consultants Ron Finlay
and Robert Gillespie.

That trade-off includes poorer water quality in the
Penrhyn Estuary because the extended terminal would
increase the time it took to flush the waterway. It
would also reduce access for migratory birds because
the channel they fly through would be narrowed.

The northern option also had the greatest visual
impact from the residential area near Foreshore Beach
but this was not significant, the report said.

The estuary is already under siege, with the toxic
plume from the Orica chemical plant creeping within
100 metres and damage caused by erosion.

Sydney Ports included the northern option in its
original expansion plan about five years ago but the
State Government would not support the entire
expansion at once after concerns were raised about its
effect on the environment and traffic.

In February, the Minister for Planning, Frank Sartor,
set up the expert panel to consider the best location
for the second stage.

The total expansion, the first berth of which is
expected to begin operation in 2010 or 2011, is
designed to cater for a near tripling of activity, to
3.2 million containers a year, by 2025.

Nancy Hillier, of the community group Botany
Environment Watch, said Botany residents opposed the
whole expansion because of the massive increase in
traffic and the environmental damage that would

"We don't see anywhere where it's proven that the
fifth berth is needed," Mrs Hillier said. "The noise,
the air pollution, the dredging will be closer now to
the shoreline ¡K if they want to build that part, they
have got to compensate the residents for medical fees
because of the noise and the stress from both the
construction and the operation of it.

"The Penrhyn Estuary is in a very fragile state right
now because of what has happened in the past. It needs
to be nurtured, not vandalised."

The City of Botany Bay is most concerned about the
extra traffic that will be generated by the increased
port activity, which it expects will be compounded by
a proposed retail development at nearby Sydney

It says the State Government and Sydney Ports have
failed to conduct a traffic study to assess the
cumulative effect of developments in the area.

The public is invited to make a submission on the
expert report by July 4.

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