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Surfrider weighs in on Gold Coast cruise ships

Artist's rendering of proposed Gold Coast Ocean Terminal



Environment Updates

Cruise Ships and Casinos highlight terminal condition of coast

Surfersvillage Global Surf News, 5 March, 2014 - The Queensland State Government has given Gold Coast City Council a list of requirements that must be met in order to continue to develop the Broadwater Marine Project (BMP) at The Spit. The Broadwater Marine Project involves the development of a Cruise Ship Terminal and Casino and Resort at the Spit on the Northern Gold Coast. 

In 2013 Surfrider Foundation Australia added ‘The Other Side’ (TOS) at South Stradbroke Island to its endangered wave list recognizing that if approved the project would restrict access to the break and the dredging would have a negative impact on wave quality.  

Following the decision of the State Government Gold Coast City Councilors now have the opportunity to withdraw their support for the project and end this waste of time and resources. “Gold Coast City Councilors have the opportunity to stand up for the city’s waves and beaches and put an end to this crazy project once and for all”

Chairman of Surfrider Foundation Australia Brendan Donohoe described it as being “a zombie threat...kill it off and resurfaces 8-10 years later.  I mean what do we have to do drive a fiberglass stake through its heart, strangle it with legropes and drag it out to sea?”

In 2005 the Beattie Government ran an unsuccessful campaign to develop a cruise ship terminal on the same site.  At that time several members of the current Newman government pledged that they would never support a Cruise Ship Terminal at that site – promises which they have since reneged on by failing to oppose Newman’s partnership with Tate on the project.  The only difference between the 2005 proposal and Tate’s is that he is talking about much bigger ships in a far less predictable climate.

“The fact that Tate’s proposal roped in Campbell Newman into wasting time and money on a project that was rejected in 2006 on environmental and economic grounds highlights a coastal management system in need of serious review”

“It’s now clear that there is bugger all public support for Tate’s project and this entire fiasco feels like a public coastal land grab which last time I looked was not in oversupply.  It shines a bright light on a failing coastal management system that can be overrun by politics of the day

“In the wake of this fiasco we call on Campbell Newman to immediately enact appropriate protections for the site of the proposed Cruise Ship Terminal and to get serious about reflecting the Queensland community’s passion for the coast in appropriate legislation”  

The impact of BMP prompted Surfrider Foundation Australia to add TOS to their endangered wave list.  TOS joins nine other Australian waves on the list including ‘Broken Boards’ at Bastion Point in Victoria which is currently being destroyed by the construction of a break wall and boat ramp right through the point break.

The Gold Coast Council’s own studies have shown that the proposed project is a serious threat to the ‘A frame’ awesomeness of TOS.  The dredging required to get mega cruise ships past TOS would alter the way the wave breaks for the worse whilst a casino and resort on the current carpark would create an access nightmare for surfers.

For further information contact:

Brendan Donohoe

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