15.5 C
Byron Shire
May 7, 2021

Last ditch opposition to West Byron development

Latest News

From go to whoa – Norco Primex expo covers it all

Norco and Primex are bringing a three-day sustainable farming and primary industry expo to you.

Other News

Meet local firies and save lives, including your own

Meeting local firefighters and learning about home fire prevention is really important and more so in recent times and into the future.

Correcting the record

Duncan Dey, Greens candidate for mayor 2021–24 I wish to correct the record for those who listened to Thursday’s Council...

Valley landholders

John Hayter, Tintenbar It came as no surprise to seasoned valley landholders when ex-Cyclone Debbie swept in from the coast...

Byron Bay wins season opener against Mullum Giants

  Ross Kendall The local league derby is always  and the Byron Bay Red Devils have won the first game of...

Get over it, Byron Baes!

Andrew Willy Wilson, Mullumbimby Are you guys for real? I can’t believe all the fuss over the proposed Byron Baes...

Humans suck

Hannah Grace, Ocean Shores I heard on the local news, like, this afternoon (April 20), that 370+ kilos of tuna...

[author]Ray Moynihan and Chris Dobney[/author]

With just two days remaining before the exhibition of plans for the proposed West Byron Development are due to close, North Coast Environment Council (NCEC) is the latest organisation to come out swinging against it.

And now Byron Shire Council has called for a halt to the rezoning.

NCEC President Susie Russell has raised the issue in relation to the upcoming United Nations Climate Change Conference in Durban, South Africa, making the point that Australian governments are still largely in denial over global warming.

‘West Byron is a case in point,’ she says.

‘The development will see about 1000 homes, plus retail and industrial buildings, built on the floodplain of the Belongil Creek.

‘Developing the floodplain of a coastal estuary is not wise. With sea levels rising and rainfall intensifying due to climate change it will subject future landowners to massive risks and hardships.

‘Scientists have been telling us that one in a 100 year floods can [now] be expected every 20 years. This is consistent with what we are seeing in northern NSW.

‘If the NSW government accepts this “concept” and rezones this floodplain for residential, retail and industrial development, will the taxpayers of NSW be responsible for picking up the tab for flood damage to this suburban infrastructure?’

Council opposed

Meanwhile Byron Shire Council wants the state government to hold off considering the rezoning of West Byron until broad transport issues, including traffic by-passes, are resolved

In a motion which passed narrowly last Thursday, Council said the rezoning should not proceed until ‘adequate arrangements and funding’ are in place so transport issues can be addressed to the ‘satisfaction of Council and the community.’

Another motion from the Greens councillors rejecting the West Byron development was narrowly defeated.

Mayor and state member Jan Barham is strongly opposed to West Byron saying it is the ‘wrong location’ and the site is ‘inherently unsuitable’ because of its proximity to wildlife corridors, dangers to plant and animal life and threats to the health of the local waterways. ‘It would be irresponsibility for us to allow that site to be further developed,’ she said.

And Echonetdaily reported last Friday that local environmentalist Dailan Pugh has expressed grave fears about the potential for extra pollution flowing into the neighbouring estuary and wetlands. ‘It could well be the death of Belongil Creek,’ said Mr Pugh. See our video report and further comments from Mr Pugh by clicking on the picture above.

Echonetdaily requested an interview with the landowners, but was unable to talk to any of them. West Byron’s media relations are being managed by Ms Carolyn Swindell, from a firm called Charlie Sierra, which specialises in ‘reputation’ and ‘crisis’ management as well as communications.

According to its website, ‘Charlie Sierra can help you understand what your reputation is and help you chart the course for protecting and improving it.’ Along with media relations, the firm also boasts skills in ‘measuring and understanding how you’re currently viewed’ and ‘refining your company’s voice and using it to shift debate’.

Asked why the West Byron landowner’s group had hired a firm specialising in reputation and crisis management, Ms Swindell said she wore a ‘number of hats, not all at the same time’ and that she had provided ‘media relations support’ for the project since mid-2010.

For more information or to lodge an objection to the proposal visit the state government’s major projects website.


Support The Echo

Keeping the community together and the community voice loud and clear is what The Echo is about. More than ever we need your help to keep this voice alive and thriving in the community.

Like all businesses we are struggling to keep food on the table of all our local and hard working journalists, artists, sales, delivery and drudges who keep the news coming out to you both in the newspaper and online. If you can spare a few dollars a week – or maybe more – we would appreciate all the support you are able to give to keep the voice of independent, local journalism alive.

LEAVE A REPLY

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

Greater Sydney goes into COVID related lockdown

NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian has just announced that greater Sydney area will go into lockdown until next Monday.

Board defends its management of Mullum Rural Co-op

The issue of potential fraud and financial mismanagement was a key part of the response from Mullumbimby Rural Co-op board, and Chair Ross Tucker,...

An operetta and children’s theatre for NORPA

NOPRA has announced recipients of the theatre company’s two artist residencies.

Dam doesn’t give a damn about koalas

The proposed Dunoon Dam is still a possibility, though it has been voted against twice by the members of Rous County Council. Now information has emerged which presents another reason to shut down the threat of the dam once and for all.