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Byron Shire
September 16, 2021

Nature’s revenge

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Clive Quick, Rous

Regarding Ballina Council’s warnings of tidal flooding in various streets in the Ballina Shire (Echo online,12 January). For several decades we have been trying to stop Ballina Shire Council filling in all wetlands and swamps around Ballina Island.

A drive around Ballina town will show all the areas ‘reclaimed’ from swamp and wetlands. The following are a few – Banyanda Estate, Harvey Norman near the airport, the industrial land near the airport, INXS area, housing estate near Aldi, caravan parks of West Ballina, Over 55s estate near Bunnings – all on lowlands.

The new development proposed for the old Ferryboat Motel site on Burns Point Ferry Road for up to 400 manufactured homes is a prime example of existing flood area. Entry into the motel was considered hazardous after heavy rain and king tides – just observe the flooding in the school near Bunnings, water has been an ongoing problem there for years.

The Ballina bypass was filled in wetlands, and engineering failed to build the Alstonville Road at Uralba high enough to stop flooding from king tides and heavy rain. Another case was the Ballina Tip fiasco several years ago with warnings and fines of $40,000 from the EPA resulting in $6–$8 million to be paid to cart rubbish to Queensland at ratepayers’ expense. Regarding this, Council staff stated, words to the effect of ‘we now have a great tip’.

The recent heavy rain on the Alstonville Plateau (132mm 30 December, 2020; 41mm 7 January, 2021; 39mm 8 January 2021) resulted in a polluted neighbouring dam to overflow (again) through our property, down to Marom Creek Weir. The EPA contacted Council but they stated, words to the effect, ‘we won’t waste resources going out to inspect Quicks’.

Some staff and councillors have been in their jobs far too long.

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