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Byron Shire
June 18, 2021

The survival crisis

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John Lazarus, Byron Bay

Council passed a final Report on the bypass at last Thursday’s meeting. Unfortunately, we have to deal with these councillor/bureaucrats’ philosophy that traffic is more important to them than the survival crisis that we, and all other species, are facing.

Both Cr Lyon and Ndiaye criticised the residents’ court case, and the morning protest action, for the cost blowout.

They ignored the fact that Council falsely alleged in the court case, and to the public, that there were no Critically Endangered Species on the site, and that it was the residents who forced Council to belatedly comply with the Federal law of PRIOR reporting impacts on threatened species, and the subsequent cost of required compensatory sites. 

The report, and these two councillors, also claimed that the protesters were inappropriately at fault for the delays.

I guess we are fortunate that these two councillors weren’t at the first major 1970s forest blockade in the world, in the hills behind Byron, as we would have been in an even worse environmental crisis than now.

This bypass site had the highest density of critically endangered Mitchell’s Rainforest Snails on the planet, and its clearing permanently increases our carbon emissions.

The report contains misstruths and propaganda, and Cr Ndiaye’s criticism of the protest action shows how far sections of the Greens have descended from prioritising environmental values.

The first big forest protests in the world were in the hills behind Byron and drove change in an era when there were no Environment Ministers in any world government, when there was no environmental protection legislation (or even broad comprehension of the need to protect our environmental heritage and our life-on-Earth support systems).

This development’s greenhouse gases will permanently contribute to increased intensity of bushfires and floods, and the erosion of Main Beach. Byron Council and these councillors are acting like science deniers. It appears that our Shire’s long history of environmental priorities is being slaughtered by this bureaucracy.

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  1. Love the Butler St Bypass . Love the beautiful Railway Park .
    If you want to find hundreds of Mitchell Snails dead or alive go into the Tallow Creek catchment.

    As everyone can see now the bypass has given huge relief to so many , no more sitting in traffic queues on Jonson St spewing carbon monoxide over shoppers .
    Congratulations to Mayor Simon and the Councillors who stood firm on both the Bypass and Railway Park instead of being pressured by the blinkered Deep Green Old Guard .

  2. No need for red lists, no need for learned ecologists, Professor Bensley can tell us what’s endangered, critically endangered, vulnerable whatever. Who’d a thunk it?

    No-one likes sitting in clogged traffic and the by-pass is marginally useful – very questionable though that it achieves what you claim but. And it’s not like Johnson Street’s the extent of traffic mayhem.

    What was more contentious was the way the environmental impact was assessed then the “ameliorative” efforts made when the full damage became patently obvious. If Greens, deep pale or tinged with blue, aren’t about species conservation what is their core business?

    Why wasn’t the rail corridor properly investigated? If feasible we wouldn’t need a roundabout at an L intersection that’s clearly there to allow options to extend south. If feasible we could have some alleviation of the congestion on Bangalow Road and a decent bike path from Suffolk Park into Byron Bay.


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