Respect Ramsar

Respect Ramsar

Recent media revelations that former Environment Minister Josh Frydenberg exercised political discretion to progress approvals for the destructive Toondah Harbour mega-development in south-east Queensland.

The proposed development will permanently destroy important feeding habitat used by Eastern Curlew and other threatened migratory shorebirds. 

This development should have immediately been declared ‘unacceptable’ by the Environment Minister. Instead, it has been given the green light for an environmental assessment, with no transparent explanation. 

The decision by the Minister goes against expert advice of the Department and highlights the need for stronger national environment laws and independent institutions to ensure those laws are applied ...

Recent media revelations that former Environment Minister Josh Frydenberg exercised political discretion to progress approvals for the destructive Toondah Harbour mega-development in south-east Queensland.

The proposed development will permanently destroy important feeding habitat used by Eastern Curlew and other threatened migratory shorebirds. 

This development should have immediately been declared ‘unacceptable’ by the Environment Minister. Instead, it has been given the green light for an environmental assessment, with no transparent explanation. 

The decision by the Minister goes against expert advice of the Department and highlights the need for stronger national environment laws and independent institutions to ensure those laws are applied without political influence. 

Critically endangered migratory shorebirds like the Eastern Curlew rely on this internationally important wetland for their survival. If approved, Toondah will set a dangerous precedent for 2,331 Ramsar sites around the world.  

The international community is watching what happens next.

 

 

 

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Petition Minister Price

Dear The Honourable Melissa Price MP: Minister for the Environment,

When Australia became the first signatory to the Ramsar Convention on Wetlands of International Importance, we sent a strong message to the world of Australia as a global leader in wetland conservation, committed to protecting and conserving these special places forever.

We were the first to designate a Ramsar Site, the Coburg Peninsula in the Northern Territory, and have since designated 65 more sites representing each state and territory.

But today, at a time when the world’s wetlands are rapidly disappearing and the total area of wetlands has decreased by 35% since the Ramsar Convention was first signed, Australia’s commitment to wetland protection is being thrown into serious doubt.

A development in Toondah Harbour, within the Moreton Bay Ramsar Site, proposes to unnecessarily and permanently reclaim 42 hectares of Ramsar listed wetlands.

The Commonwealth Department of Environment & Energy has advised you that the development will likely have significant impacts on the ecological character of the Moreton Bay Ramsar site, and will have “impacts on the lifecycle of an ecologically significant proportion of the population of Eastern Curlew and other listed migratory species through the removal of, or disturbance to, foraging and roosting habitat in or near the referral area.”

And yet, your Government has not used its power to reject this development outright.

As Minister, you are responsible for the conservation and protection of Matters of National Environmental Significance including migratory species, threatened species and Ramsar wetlands. Moreton Bay ticks all of these boxes.

Minister, please stand up for Australia’s Ramsar sites and the rich community of animals and plants that depend on them. Uphold our international obligations, respect Ramsar, and stop the current Toondah Harbour development.