Community input on gulf’s future

Alexander ScottPilbara News
Project Ningaloo. Whale Breach. Subsea 7 operations have been planned for Heron Point in the Exmouth Gulf.
Camera IconProject Ningaloo. Whale Breach. Subsea 7 operations have been planned for Heron Point in the Exmouth Gulf. Credit: Supplied

The Exmouth community has had the chance to share their concerns about the impact of developments in the Exmouth Gulf as part of the Environmental Protection Authority review of proposals in the region.

The consultation will help inform the EPA’s response to a State Government request to provide strategic advice on how activities and developments will impact the Gulf.

The independent board began a three-week community consultation last week to help inform its report to Environment Minister Stephen Dawson on the impact developments would have on the Gulf.

Mr Dawson wrote to the EPA in August requesting information on the current state of social, cultural and environmental values in Exmouth Gulf and the potential impacts by proposed developments including the Subsea 7 proposal, the Gascoyne Gateway proposal, and the K+S salt proposal.

A focus group, with representatives from groups including CSIRO and Protect Ningaloo, has also been established to provide specific advice to the board.

EPA chairman Tom Hatton said the public consultation would provide the basis of our advice to the minister on the compatibility of future developments with the values of Exmouth Gulf.”

Mr Dawson said he was seeking an understanding of how any new proposals will add to the cumulative impacts on the gulf’s social, cultural and environmental values.

“I expect the advice from the EPA will assist my consideration of the authority’s final recommendation on the Subsea 7 proposal and related local scheme amendment, as well as other activities and developments planned for the Exmouth Gulf,” he said.

The report is expected to be finished next June.

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