Field of Science

Pave paradise, put up a parking lot

What the bloody hell are they thinking? Please understand, far northern Queensland is one of TPP's favorite places, so why does big money interests continue to try to pave paradise and put up a parking lot?  In an early bout of developmental insanity, moneyed interests ruined Port Douglas.  What was previously a sleepy outpost on the Daintree River, a last bit of civilization on the edge of rainforest and coral reef (one of the few places on Earth where the two meet).  Port Douglas was at the end of a 11 km road. All of the tropical vegetation was bulldozed, resorts and (gad!) golf courses were built, all to attract Japanese tourists, but a transportation glitch (if TPP remembers correctly) left all this new development without tourists, and the Japanese bought it all at bankruptcy sales. Man, in the old days you only needed a sarong and a pair of flip-flops to wander along an unspoiled beach.  TPP cannot bring himself to return. Well, this development idea is even worse. North of Cairns are a series of beach communities, wonderful places to sort of just drop out. The beaches are wonderfully undeveloped, and then mostly small, locally owned businesses.  At any rate, look at this monstrosity, the Aquis project!  A project way out of proportion with far northern Queensland, especially when located near Yorkeys Knob, an otherwise lovely beach community.  And then get this. "A gigantic resort proposed for far north Queensland does not need federal environmental assessment, its backers have argued, even though it includes two casinos, eight accommodation towers, a golf course and a 33-hectare lake filled via a 2.2km pipeline from the Great Barrier Reef."  Yes, that's right!  An environmental impact study isn't needed because something like this project isn't going to have any serious impact on the local environment even though located on an estuary flood plain. Just the construction alone will produce a huge amount of sediment that will wash out to sea. And naturally several thousand guests won't produce any waste water needing treatment. Anyone who has visited Cairns will know that the seaside Esplanade, while lovely, overlooks a mud flat, actually a biologically interesting area, but not a beach, the result of soil loss from sugar cane farming. And sediments always affects the Barrier Reef too, so the developers are showing a total disregard for the environment. Might as well fill in those mangroves and pave the area for parking. So, in this humble opinion, such projects will ruin the unique nature and culture of far northern Queensland, not to mention the environmental damage. TPP is greatly saddened.

1 comment:

Unknown said...

As an Australian, I am depressed. This is yet another Queensland boondoggle. I don't understand what is wrong in this country, that these short-sighted stupidities keep on being proposed, while good ecologically sound ideas struggle to get off the ground. Check this out - they have been trying to get this off the ground in Australia for ages, and now it looks like the first commercial plant will be built in Texas instead, SIGH!

I am embarrassed by our current political leadership - I could say "at least I didn't vote for them" but it doesn't mitigate the fact that sufficient of my fellows have done so to get them elected.

Ciao, KK.