On the day that Boskalis dredge Queen of the Netherlands is due to arrive in Port Phillip Bay; Blue Wedges will file its Application to the Federal Court to have Minister Garrett’s decision stayed.

“It is pretty clear that the project has started without an EMP so the Port of Melbourne Corporation is in breach of the primary condition of approval” says Jenny Warfe Blue Wedges spokesperson. The first condition of Mr. Garrett’s approval was his endorsement of the final EMP, which at 25th January was still to be approved. “The dredge is almost here, the Black Marlin has delivered barges, steel slabs have been installed for the purpose of protecting the main trunk sewer under the Yarra which would have several metres of cover removed to achieve required depth. Apparently Mr. Garrett has no interest in protecting the Bay and its ecosystems – our state and Commonwealth assets - so it’s left to ordinary Victorians to act” says Ms. Warfe.  

 Mr. Garrett received his departmental briefing advice on 17th December 2007 – which referred him to 50,000 pages of information, then made his decision to approve on 20th December 2007.  How could he have read it all in just two days? And if he did read it all, why did he get his Media Release of 20th December 2007 announcing his decision so wrong?

 He cannot possibly have absorbed and considered all the relevant information within those 50,000 pages. Consequently:

 Mr. Garrett has failed to adequately consider the social impacts of the project, including risks to human health and impacts on recreational fishing

 Mr. Garrett failed to notify ministers with relevant responsibility, being the Minister for Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry (Tony Burke), The Minister for Tourism (Martin Ferguson) and the Minister for Climate Change and Water (Sen. Penny Wong).

Mr. Garrett failed to consider evidence of the Port of Melbourne Corporation’s environmental record including its failure to comply with the Trial dredge EMP, assessment of contamination risk, management of other assets, and it’s commercial in confidence contract with Boskalis.

Mr. Garrett failed to exercise natural justice in his decision making. He did not consider the possibility of not approving the project, and it seems put political expediency in front of his duty to protect environmental matters under his control.

 “Mr. Garrett has made another dud decision” says Ms. Warfe


We expect to lodge our Application at The Federal Court this afternoon Tuesday 29th January





Previous page: General
Next page: Coming Events