Yesterday saw an unexpected change of plan for the Port Corporation.

Following Minister Garrett’s approval of the “strengthened Environmental Management Plan” (his words), PoMC gave 24 hours notice that it intended to commence dredging Thursday 7th. First cab off the rank for the PoMC was to be construction of the toxic dump site, for the “storage” of the 7 million tonnes of highly contaminated and toxic sediment from the Yarra bed.


As PoMC intended to start work, Blue Wedges returned to court Wednesday 6th to file for a stay in proceedings until the 20th, when the case will be heard in full. Instead of proceeding with injunction hearing, the Court ordered BW and PoMC to embark on mediation, culminating in PoMC making undertakings with the Court


PoMC undertook to:


  • Dredge only within the southern channel and only between KP marker 22.0 and KP marker 30.0 (8km stretch west of Hovell Pile)
  • To a maximum depth of 15.8 metres
  • To a total maximum volume of 1 million cubic metres
  • Material to be deposited within Project Area 3 (works area defined in SEES
  • Post on its website each weekday advice as to dredging activities over the last 24 hours (or weekend) and the activities planned for the next 24 hours (or weekend).


The dredged volume is considerably less than the maintenance dredging of 2002 or the trial dredge of 2005. The section of channel is west of the Hovell Pile, and excludes the area where extensive works to widen the turning area are planned.


The matter returns to court on 20th February. Please show your support in attending the Federal Court, 305 William St. Melbourne on 20th February from 10 AM. 




Some people may be concerned that Blue Wedges has agreed to the project going ahead. NOTHING COULD BE FURTHER FROM THE TRUTH!


Prior to the 20th February:


        The Yarra mouth with its dormant toxic sediments has been protected

        The Entrance to Port Phillip is protected from new damage being done

        Our case, which challenges Garrett’s decision, based on the reasons which he did not make public prior to our first court appearance, can be argued on its full merits on 20th February.


We are hopeful that the least harmful option has been adopted by the PoMC.


In the meantime, we must highlight the dangers of any further work commencing ever. Loss of habitat, loss of dives sites, loss of fish stocks, loss of fish nurseries, loss of amenity, loss of the assurance that a family swim at the beach will not bring sickness with it… Loss of or serious harm to a great number of businesses all around the Bay… A looming awareness that the risk of ship groundings and/or oil spills at the Heads could be a catastrophe that no environmental bond will ever be adequate to fix.


Please join in with our forthcoming activities and consider ways in which you can make a difference. This is the time for the Power of the People to be mobilised and focused. This way we will ensure that we NEVER get a toxic dump in the Bay, or suffer further irreversible damage to The Entrance.


Whilst Boskalis is in the south of the bay: Get out your binoculars, go for your walks, report your observations to one another and to the local and daily papers. Be the voice now that you may have missed being before. Take photos. Raise awareness. Help stop things going any further.


Contact us for banners for your fence and bumper stickers. Email Dee on Bazndaz7@bigpond.com  or 59812909


Read the papers: here are some links for today


http://www.theage.com.au/news/national/delay-as-yarra-mouth-work-barred/2008/02/06/1202233951223.html    from The Age


http://www.news.com.au/heraldsun/story/0,21985,23171906-2862,00.html  from the Herald-Sun


and for a more general view and heart-felt message from a supporter



Let’s achieve what the people of Mildura did when they rejected the Nowingi toxic dump. They stood up to protect their environment, and we should do no less. Otherwise we will get a toxic dump 60 times the one Mildura rejected in our Bay!




(By the way the "strengthened" EMP has NO trigger points to stop works if rocks fall below a certain depth whilst dredging at The Entrance........we wonder why? Perhaps because they know that they cannot stop thousands of tonnes of rocks falling into the canyon, damaging the unique sponge gardens on the way down. Nor is there any specified maximum depth for dredging.)


See what the ACF has to say about the EPA, the PoMC and their poisonous plans for the Bay at http://www.acfonline.org.au/default.asp?section_id=254


Best wishes,




Next page: Media Releases