There appears to have been some light at the end of the tunnel with the report from Barry Ross, Secretary, defenders of the Green Wedge after a deputation to see the Planning Minister, Richard Wynne. Sustainability Victoria has now acknowledged that the Kingston/Dingley Waste Hub should be located in an industrial area. However the Minister is still considering the Alex Fraser lease application for a further 15 years for the concrete crushing business to remain on Heatherton Road.
Will certainly cause headaches for builders further down the track. Nice new concrete curbing at the Antibes car park will have to be removed when the Bay Trail reaches that point it seems!
Removal of Vegetation on Mordialloc Foreshore
Nina and Mary attended the Council Planning meeting Wednesday 18th February where the issue of the removal of locally indigenous vegetation is to be removed prior to the construction of a large, two storey lifesaving building on the elevated primary dune. Because of the elevated site of the replacement building, it does not seem necessary to remove so much vegetation. MBCL’s position is that, at very least, a stand of six Casuarinas could be retained if a path is realigned. This foreshore vegetation was planted by Mordialloc Council approx 40 years ago and has struggled to survive in the sandy soil and harsh salt wind environment, now when the trees have reached maximum (medium) height they are to be removed to provide large surf boats with a path to the water.
End of Year Report
Another busy year for members as Federal and State Governments over turn what we all thought would be rock solid environmental protection of National Parks, Marine Sanctuaries, Native Forests, Agricultural land, Ramsar Wetlands, Green Wedges and the list goes on. Pressure from developers has brought about radical changes to planning regulation under New Residential Zones based on a 2003 discussion paper. Better Decisions Faster is the result of work done by the Whitney Committee. We can expect further loss of tees, gardens and backyards in the middle ring suburbs as neighborhood character and heritage features are trashed to accommodate an unsustainable population increase. Despite this bleak scenario members have worked valiantly, lobbying, writing endless submissions, attending meetings and volunteering in native reserves.
Special mention to Penny who attends every council meeting and somehow remains sane, Bronwen who took on VicRoads at VCAT in an attempt to save signification vegetation from destruction when the Dingley Westall Bypass is built, to Judy who prepared a submission seeking to have the Beaumaris Fossil Cliffs and Sea Ledges replaced on the National Estate Register and to Rosemary who has worked tirelessly to protect the SE Green Wedge. And a big vote of thanks to Tom, out MBCL Webmaster for hit tireless work! Must not forget out Treasure who, despite a heavy work load, cheerfully(?) watches over out finances. Special thanks also to Tony who comes along each month with the Collins report and listens to out whinges. Walter’s valuable lobbying and negotiating skills much appreciated.
Good news- a report that Melbourne Water has agreed to incorporate significant remnant vegetation into the wetland to be built along the north bank of Mordialloc Creek upstream from Wells Road Bridge. Again thanks to Rosemary for her quick action to ensure that this result was possible and thanks to Neil Craigie, MW, for happily agreeing to this solution. In the tentative good news department, the first section of the Round the Bay Trail is to be back-of-kerb from Mundy Street car park to Mentone LSC park.
National Parks Privatisation
Some of the new members of the Coalition Government have not wasted time in making their plans for commercialisation of parks. Logging of the Tarkine in Tasmania, coal seam gas exploration in sensitive areas of Western Victoria and around the Grampians on the boundary of the national park threatens the survival of special places. Cuts to funding of environment groups will make it difficult to prevent destruction of parks, forests and farmland.