Media release

Call for Minister to reaffirm commitment to Toondah

Call for Minister to reaffirm commitment to Toondah | Wednesday, 7 December 2022

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Call for Minister Scanlon to reaffirm commitment to Toondah Harbour

BirdLife Australia has called on Queensland Environment Minister Megan Scanlon to clarify her government’s commitment to maintain the current boundaries for the Moreton Bay Ramsar area following comments from local member Don Brown.

The Walker corporation are proposing to develop 3600 apartments at Toondah Harbour, including on 40 hectares of globally significant wetland.

If the project goes ahead in its current form it would build within the boundaries of the Ramsar site, contrary to Australia’s legal obligations under the Ramsar Convention.

Local Labor member for Capalaba Don Brown stated in a Sky News interview today that the Ramsar boundaries were not “in the right spot”.

“Minister Scanlon ruled out any changes to the Ramsar boundary when questioned during Parliamentary estimates in 2020,” said BirdLife Australia Conservation Campaigner Andrew Hunter.

“We call on her to reaffirm this commitment following the Member for Capalaba’s comments contradicting the Minister.

“The current boundary already includes an excision that enables redevelopment of the existing ferry terminal.

“It is very concerning that local member Don Brown has called into question the Ramsar boundary in relation to the Walker Corporation project.

The Toondah Harbour project will destroy over 40 hectares of Ramsar wetland and habitat for the critically endangered Eastern Curlew and other migratory shorebirds.

At least 168 Eastern Curlews have been recorded at Toondah Harbour in recent weeks despite the Walker Corporation EIS stating a maximum of 45 are using the area.

“This project was deemed clearly unacceptable by the federal Environment Department in 2017 and should never have progressed this far,” concluded Mr Hunter.

The final decision regarding the project’s approval rests with the federal Environment Minister Tanya Plibersek.

Media contact: Andrew Hunter
M: 0449 935 184