Independent NSW Upper House Member, Justin Field, is calling on Boral to abandon its proposal to open two new sandmining pits on the western side of the Highway, north of the Minnamurra River.
“I am prepared to work with Boral to find a way for it to continue its sandmining on the South Coast, in a less environmentally sensitive area,” he says.
“As a sign of good faith, they should abandon this project so we can move forward.
“While I recognise the need for more sandmining reserves to be identified, I am concerned that this proposal is moving the operation into ecologically sensitive areas, and it can’t be allowed to happen.”
While Boral says the larger, southern pit is no closer than 370 metres from the River, Mr Field believes the real measurement should be taken from the edge of the tidal saltmarsh, which is 150 metres from the pit.
This saltmarsh is ecologically sensitive habitat that needs to be protected to ensure the health of the River.”
Although Boral’s formal Response to Submissions has been lodged, at time of writing it has not yet become available on the Department of Planning’s Major Projects Portal website.
“This offers our position on all matters raised through the public exhibition period,” says a Boral spokesperson.
Mr Field is encouraging as many people to join in a community protest he is organising with the Friends of the Minnamurra River, Gerroa Environmental Protection Society (GEPS) and the Surfrider Foundation to show their concern for the River.
“We will be assembling on the hill overlooking the River to hear about the issues, and then will be creating a message with our bodies to show our opposition to the sand mine proposal,” says Warren Holder of GEPS.
This will be followed by a paddle out onto the River organised by the Surfrider Foundation to highlight the drilling issue on the Great Australian Bight.
Details: Sunday 7 July, James Oats Reserve, Minnamurra, 11am