THE MISSION BEACH COMMUNITY AND CASSOWARIES NEED YOUR HELP!
The Mission Beach community has been left shocked and bewildered at the reasoning behind the Cassowary Coast Regional Council Planners report and subsequent council approval of a helicopter base allowing up to three medium lift (heavy) helicopters to operate for multiple purposes early morning to late afternoon, 7 days a week; in the wilderness heart of their tourist town known for its quiet, peaceful amenity and population of endangered cassowaries.
Photo courtesy Ruth Williams
The Mission Beach tourism economy is reliant on its reputation as a place of exceptional beauty, its relaxed atmosphere, villages separated by farmland and rainforest and the best place to see a cassowary in the wild. The importance of the cassowary and the health of the economy, environment, and community is firmly intertwined.
There is no doubt that residents within 1 – 2 kilometres will be subjected to an unprecedented level of unavoidable, intrusive and unpredictable noise that will be completely at odds with the lifestyle for which they have chosen to live in this locality.
The high levels of noise, pressure waves, vibration, and associated downdraft of every helicopter operation will inevitably cause cassowaries to abandon the important corridors adjacent to and surrounding the site.
We let the council know the development would have an unacceptable impact on our lifestyle, our sense of place, our tourism industry and on our endangered cassowaries. But they didn’t listen.
The council ignored the community, they ignored their own Planning Scheme and they didn’t consider the impacts on the cassowary.
DEVELOPER PLACED AHEAD OF COMMUNITY
The Development Application was inadequate on the following grounds:
· development activities applied for are incompatible with the site on all grounds
· contained misleading information such as the compass direction of the flight path
· claimed there would be only one flight path, in contradiction of CASA regulations;
· changed published site drawings of proposal after community complaints;
· no whole of project declared despite original Application’s expressed intention to expand and add boat washing facilities
The CCRC Planner’s Report was deficient on the following grounds:
· failed to request clarification of contradictory information;
· failed to ascertain detail and nature of the proposed “future expansion”
· failed to require an Environmental Impact Assessment
· Improperly represented change of use of agricultural land as “diversification”
The crazy thing is, there are plenty of other places much more suited for an aviation facility within the Cassowary Coast that would not have the impact on residents and where there are a networks of cassowary corridors.
COURT APPEAL ONLY OPTION
We were told that if we disagreed with the decision we can exercise our right of appeal. What that really means is “If you don’t like it, take us to court”.
WE NEED YOUR HELP
We urgently need to raise $40,000 to help pay legal costs to fight this development in the Planning and Environment court. Holding Redlich have been engaged to represent the community appeal.
Some of the expenses include expert reports, something the council should have required the developer to lodge with the Development Application, but there were none.
Funds raised by Mission Beach Cassowaries Inc through this gofundme and any other efforts will be held in a dedicated bank account and used for no other purpose except for the above.
Your donation is very much appreciated. You can also help by sharing this with your friends and asking for their help too.
THANKYOU from the community and the cassowaries of Mission Beach.
Cassowaries are already doing it tough at Mission Beach.
It would be hard to imagine a development having a higher impact on our community or the cassowary than large helicopters operating from early morning to late afternoon 7 days a week at this location.
No Helicopters Here website
Managed by Mission Beach Cassowaries Inc
Mission Beach Cassowaries Facebook
0414 402 315
- Carolyn Emms
- JESSIE OLDFIELD
- Errol Dooley Dooley
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