Stop the Mission Beach heliport development

 

Cassowary Coast Regional Council has approved a heliport development in Mission Beach that will have devastating impacts on the already endangered Southern Cassowary.

  • The development was approved by Cassowary Coast Regional Council in January 2021
  • Council did not consider a petition from local residents 
  • The development will see an aviation facility located on Tully-Mission Beach Road on 11.16ha of land that is zoned rural. 
  • The Minister for State Development, Infrastructure, Local Government and Planning has the ability to ‘call-in’ this development if it affects State Interests
  • The endangered Southern Cassowary is, without a doubt, a matter of State Interest and this development, without a doubt will impact the Cassowary
  • The Cassowary is recognised in local, regional, State and Federal planning instruments and legislation and is protected under Queensland’s Nature Conservation Act as well as the federal Environmental Protection and Biodiversity Act (EPBC). 
  • Cassowary Coast Regional Council’s very own Planning Scheme refers to the preservation of Cassowary habitat because the Cassowary is recognised as an iconic symbol of the region.

We can’t count on the local council to protect the Cassowary, but we can count on people power. Please sign our petition now, calling on the Minister to call-in this application and protect the Southern Cassowary from inappropriate development.

Will you sign?

 

Frightened Mission Beach cassowary by Jeff Larson

 

To Hon Steven Miles, Minister State Development, Infrastructure, Local Government and Planning

Urgently call-in the heliport development at Mission Beach and protect endangered cassowaries 

The endangered Southern Cassowary is a matter of State Interest. The iconic bird is recognised in local, regional, State and Federal planning instruments and legislation and is protected under Queensland’s Nature Conservation Act as well as the federal Environmental Protection and Biodiversity Act (EPBC). 

The Far North Queensland Regional Plan refers to Mission Beach as containing areas of High Ecological Significance including essential habitat of the endangered Southern Cassowary. That same Plan states that development proponents should consider the EPBC Act prior to taking any action, but to date, the applicant for this heliport development has not done so.

Cassowary Coast Regional Council’s very own Planning Scheme refers to the preservation of Cassowary habitat because the Cassowary is recognised as an iconic symbol of the region.

Despite this, Cassowary Coast Regional Council has approved a controversial heliport development on land which includes mapped areas of High Ecological Significance. The development will have a significant impact on Mission Beach’s Cassowary population. 

  • Habitat loss is the number one threat to the survival of the endangered Southern Cassowary. 
  • The land on which this development will take place includes mapped areas of High Ecological Significance. 
  • This Development Application was not supported by any technical reports that allow us to ascertain the biodiversity value of adjacent habitat, the measures required to protect biodiversity and habitat on that site, or the demonstrated impact on biodiversity values. 
  • The Development Application contained no assessment from a qualified expert as to how the facility will impact existing nesting, breeding and roosting sites located adjacent to the development or the impact on those sites being disturbed during take-off and landing procedures. 

The noise pollution from the development is likely to have a high impact on the behaviour of cassowaries already under stress of being pushed into small habitat ranges and forced to use narrow habitat corridors.  

  • The development’s flight path is directly over a high biodiversity coastal wetland including critically endangered Littoral rainforest which connects the Wet Tropics and the Great Barrier Reef World Heritage Areas.
  • The impact zone of the flight path from the facility is over a wilderness area which supports five cassowaries on a permanent basis.
  • The loud noise of helicopters will place cassowaries at a higher risk of roadkill from birds taking fright and may result in cassowaries avoiding essential habitat.
  • Cassowaries are mostly solitary and communicate with low frequency booming sounds that penetrate the rainforest to let other birds know of their presence.  Helicopter noise and vibration may confuse or interrupt their ability to communicate.  

This development undoubtedly affects an environmental interest of state significance: the preservation of the endangered Southern Cassowary and its habitat in the Mission Beach area. 

The potential effects of this development on the Southern Cassowary have not been properly assessed because of the inadequate information in the Development Application material. 

And the Development Application is inconsistent with the principles of ecological sustainability that underpin the Planning Act. For this project to be consistent with those principles it would need to conserve, enhance or restore habitat necessary for the survival of the endangered Southern Cassowary. 

We’re calling on you, as Minister for State Development, Infrastructure, Local Government and Planning to use your call-in powers to re-assess the application for a heliport at Mission Beach.

 

 

 

 

326 signatures
  • Jessica-Rose Turner
    signed 2021-04-12 00:12:49 +1000
  • Caitlin Norton
    signed 2021-04-09 17:30:30 +1000
  • Terry Moran
    signed 2021-04-06 07:49:37 +1000
  • Larry Mounser
    signed 2021-04-04 08:20:12 +1000
    We can hardly lead by example, when we destroy our own.
  • Martin Oliver
    signed 2021-04-04 07:42:55 +1000
  • Teri Visentin
    signed 2021-04-04 06:55:03 +1000
  • Deborah Robinson
    signed 2021-04-03 22:30:49 +1100
  • Tania Devereux
    signed 2021-04-03 20:02:57 +1100
  • Adrian Kass
    signed 2021-04-02 22:17:36 +1100
  • Martin Balkwill
    signed 2021-04-02 21:28:09 +1100
  • Samantha Craig
    signed 2021-04-02 13:15:44 +1100
  • Kaelan Macaulay
    signed 2021-04-02 11:57:50 +1100
  • Kate Mottram
    signed 2021-04-02 09:07:03 +1100
  • Ms. Margaret Stowers
    signed 2021-04-02 08:53:57 +1100
    I have been visiting beautiful Mission Beach for over 40yrs. I keep returning because the rainforest is so unique and seeing cassowaries ‘in the wild’ is an amazing experience.
  • Lisa Serpa
    signed 2021-04-02 08:36:21 +1100
    Its a disgrace that Council did this. Shows they dont care about cassowaries at all. They are also allowing over development, land clearing and habitat destruction. They should be taken to Court!
  • Petra Jones
    signed 2021-04-02 06:49:30 +1100
    Our environment is worth protecting. Let common sense prevail and stop the heliport.
  • Jessica Nietz
    signed 2021-04-02 00:54:45 +1100
  • john borg
    signed 2021-04-01 23:09:40 +1100
  • Coralie De Salvo
    signed 2021-04-01 22:59:48 +1100
  • Buff Chubalino
    signed 2021-04-01 22:53:25 +1100
  • Rosanne Munro
    signed 2021-04-01 21:26:41 +1100
  • Bryan Hunter
    signed 2021-04-01 20:46:38 +1100
  • Deren Pillay
    signed 2021-04-01 20:29:03 +1100
  • Josettte Salan/Braithwaite
    signed 2021-04-01 19:05:38 +1100
    Can’t believe this Helipad has been approved.

    This will be devastating for the southern cassowary.

    There can be no gain without loss but to loose this 11.6ha is surely not worth the gain.
  • Jill Ogle-Skan
    signed 2021-04-01 18:52:20 +1100
  • Della Parkinson
    signed 2021-04-01 18:07:41 +1100
  • Dan Williamson
    signed 2021-04-01 16:59:44 +1100
  • Christine McDonnell
    signed 2021-04-01 16:18:21 +1100
  • Tanja Froehlich
    signed 2021-04-01 16:04:59 +1100
  • Michael McCabe
    signed 2021-04-01 15:25:10 +1100