A spot of unauthorised dredging!

Several regular Bay watchers have said they thought the dredge was outside its usual area from time to time. It seems they were right.

The Victorian environmental monitor (OEM) has asked for a report on unauthorised dredging work off Rosebud. The Port of Melbourne Corporation apparently notified the OEM that the Queen of the Netherlands dredged sand outside the approved area for about one and a half minutes last month. OEM director, Mick Bourke (Brumby government appointee and Chair of the Environment Protection Authority) says the affected area is about 100 metres, and it will be “examined to ensure there have been no detrimental effects”. He also said he will investigate why the incident happened and make sure it does not happen again.

It’s hard to believe that only 90 seconds of “unauthorised” dredging occurred and why 90 seconds of dredging outside the authorised area was considered worthy of reporting isn’t it? History tells a different story…... During the Trial dredge, PoMC reported a rockfall incident to be “minor”, of around 20 cubic metres of rock.

However, once independent divers were able to access the area, hundreds of tonnes of rocks were on the move. By the 2007 SEES, PoMC admitted that the trial had triggered around 6,000 cubic metres of rockfall. By the end of the SEES Inquiry they reluctantly admitted that even more rockfall, shipping hazard and scour damage would continue for the next 30 years. Regular maintenance will now be required to remove rocks mounding up in the Great Ship channel.    


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