Canal development will harm Penguin Island penguins

Greens South Metropolitan MLC Lynn MacLaren has slammed the Federal Government’s approval today of Cedar Woods’  large canal proposal on precious public land at Point Peron in Rockingham. 

“The planned 500-pen marina will damage seagrass beds that are not easily replaced, eliminate habitat and food sources and expose penguins to injury from boat strikes,” Ms MacLaren said. 

“The Penguin Island Little Penguin breeding population is now half what it was in 2007, with starvation the leading cause.

“The marina proposal is smack bang in the middle of these animals’ feeding and foraging ground, as well as an important fish nursery which supplies their food. 

“Neither the Federal Minister nor the WA Environmental Protection Authority have adequately examined the full consequences of this proposal – including that it will irrevocably damage the penguin colony of Penguin Island, which is a key tourist and visitor attraction for WA. 

“It is not good enough for the Federal Minister to have ruled out examining the impact on the colony based on the state of knowledge in 2010; there have been grave concerns for the colony’s survival that have been raised since then that have not been taken into account.

“This type of coastal development is also extremely vulnerable to severe storms and sea level rise and creates a huge liability for taxpayers and ratepayers. 

“The carve-up of this precious public land on the coast, that was set aside for community recreational purposes in 1964, is a moral, social, economic and environmental mistake, and it will be opposed, ” Ms MacLaren concluded.