Sincere thanks to the outgoing president, Chris King for the considerable work load undertaken during his terms as president. Chris showed tremendous foresight in proposing the establishment of a coalition of environmental groups in the City of Kingston following the amalgamation of councils. The subsequent formation of the Kingston Conservation & Environment Coalition involving twenty conservation groups has proved to be a positive move in promoting environmental issues within the City of Kingston. Chris is also a committee member of the Dandenong Valley Catchment Action Plan which is tackling the considerable endemic problems associated with Mordialloc Creek.
Guest Speaker – Allan Clarke
Allan, who was formerly with the Fisheries & Wildlife Dept, spoke about widespread public concern with the draft document, The Land Conservation Council, Marine and Coastal Special Investigation. Some of these concerns are as follows:-
- Regional Managers are all ex Forestry people with the Land Conservation Council. None of these managers have a background in marine biology.
- Politicians have decided that there would be a percentage of parks. Some of these parks have been offered protection e.g the Jawbone but existing protected sites have been downgraded e.g. the Popes Eye. Ricketts Point and the Beaumaris Cliffs are not listed for protection.
- Only 1.4% of the entire Victorian coastline are declared Sanctuary Zones and even then exploration may be allowed at Minister’s discretion. The Sanctuary Zones are only one kilometre wide. Three kilometres is required for full protection.
- DCNR has not taken overall control of the coastline. Each coastal management Council will exercise control in their area which will extend three
- How will the Sanctuary Zones be policed? Will there be sufficient manpower and equipment to patrol the entire Victorian coastline plus Port Phillip and Westernport Bays.
- The whole of Port Phillip Bay is a declared General Use area meaning that it can be explored for oil, sand or stone mining plus environmentally harmful commercial developments around the coast.
Dandenong Valley Catchment Action Committee (Mordialloc Creek Action Plan)
Chris reports that while the committee supports the wetland filtration scheme originally proposed by Melbourne Water, there is no legal requirement at the moment for Melbourne Water to remove pollution from the creek or to provide sewerage infra- structure. W 28 A should be re-instated to overcome this legal over sight. This committee will act as the Mordialloc representative on the larger Catchment Management Committee for Port Phillip Bay Region.
City of Kingston CCT Negotiations
MAV Union negotiations have broken down with the City of Kingston management. Work bans on maintenance, grass cutting and rubbish collection have been imposed. Communication between staff and management are non-existent. Management want 70% of work to be contracted out which will lead to a deterioration in the present high standard of coastal management. Parks & Gardens staff who have specialised knowledge of the foreshore and park requirements could be lost to be replaced by contract labour.
Ironically recent American experience stresses the need to involve staff in the consultation process rather than demoralising them by “down-sizing”.
Our sympathy is extended to members who were suffering personal or family illness at the time of our last meeting – Glen, Mara, Frank and Diane.
We are delighted to welcome two new League members — Liz Richards and Sonia Toneatto and hope that their time with us will be a worthwhile experience.
Mordialloc Creek / Wetlands
Following the Leagues decision to campaign strongly for the development of a linear wetland along the bank of Mordialloc Creek as a means of treating waste- water, C. King prepared letters to be sent to relevant Ministers and authorities seeking an assurance that the Melbourne Water Draft Plan would be implemented as soon as possible.
Evidence continues to mount which advocates the use of wetlands to filter and clean stormwater. Articles in the Adelaide Advertiser June 16 1994 entitled “MFP wetland tourism boost”, National LG Engineering Conference Adelaide 1993 “Stormwater Management in Adelaide” and Vol 36 No 3. September 1994 Trees and Natural Resources devotes most of the periodical to wetlands as habitat protection and water treatment resources
Heritage Listing for Beaumaris Park
C. King is finalising the submission for Heritage listing of Beaumaris Park. Maps, photos and historical records are required to complete the submission which has been a time consuming task for Chris.
Light poles which are no longer required on Mordialloc Foreshore have been partially dismantled. One pole still needs to be relocated to a less obvious position.
Two signs will be removed for the Horse Paddock car park in order to reduce the excessive signage.
Bus shelters will be re-located to a less obtrusive position on Beach Road.
The Spunner Pavilion, Mentone
A planning permit has been sought to add a kiosk/tea room to the Mentone Lifesaving Club. This will involve additional parking in Beach Road or in side streets. The “sails” on the upper balcony will be visually intrusive and will be seen as far away as Rickett’s Point. It is understood that residents have lodged objections as well as MBCL and the PPCC.
The Gordes Report / Beaumaris Park
MBCL are still awaiting an answer from Sandringham Natural Environment Group indicating whether they would be willing to co-operatively plan the foreshore from Rickett’s Point to Charman Road, Mordialloc with the City of Mordialloc. C. King will contact the City Engineer to see if they will with hold work in the park until a management plan has been completed.
The Agnew Report
A comprehensive report was presented to the committee outlining the work of Parkdale Research. The report claimed that an artificial reef of car tyres has been built off Carrum. This contravenes Environmental policy for the Bay. A new strain of mussel has been detected in the Bay as a result of ballast release. Glen spoke at one of the Braeside workshops organised by Bay Rescue during October. The workshops were very successful with 60 people in attendance.
Pollution of Mordialloc Creek
Enquiries to the Acting City Engineer about the regularity or otherwise of reports to Council concerning creek water analysis were unsatisfactory. It may be necessary to contact Melbourne Water to see if copies of the latest tests are available.
Scott Seymour of Melbourne Water states that it will require millions of dollars to remedy the problem of leachates from the Clarke Road rubbish tip entering drains in Braeside and then Mordialloc Creek.