ELECTION FORUM ON ENVIRONMENTAL ISSUES

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Photo: Larissa Penn

Many thanks to the 100 or more residents who joined WEPA, the National Parks Association of NSW (NPA NSW) and the Nature Conservation Council of NSW (NCC NSW) last night to hear from local candidates in the forthcoming State election (March 23) about the big environmental issues emerging at a local and NSW level. Invitations were extended to all candidates for the event.

The Premier, the sitting member, and local member for North Shore declined to attend but sent a written response to our questions. Apologies were sent by some candidates for the Willoughby electorate who have only just registered in the past few days and had clashing engagements.  The candidates from North Shore ALP, the Greens and Animal Justice Party were able to outline their respective party positions on the issues raised by the host organisations.

WEPA will circulate shortly a summary of the event so watch our website: www.wepa.org.au.

Foremost amongst local issues was the State Government’s proposal for a dive site in Flat Rock Gully Reserve and tunnelling below Northbridge, in Clive Park and across Middle Harbour to Seaforth and Balgowlah. The Premier’s letter revealed that the Liberal Party is still firmly behind the proposal.  Candidates last night revealed their concerns about the potential efficiency and effectiveness of the proposed car tunnel, the need for public transport options and the negative impacts of tunnelling on our local suburbs.

Larissa Penn from the local Stop the Tunnel group summed up the proposal as one of the greatest environmental challenges facing the North Shore and Willoughby electorate and urged voters to share information about its impacts with friends and neighbours and to speak further with candidates.

WEPA would like to extend thanks to our co-hosts NPA NSW and NCC NSW (which is the umbrella group for hundreds of smaller environmental groups like WEPA) who, as in the past, have lent their expertise and staff resources to make this important event a success.  Also many thanks to Glenaeon Primary School which juggled other activities on the night to allow our event to go ahead smoothly.

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