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.