Concerns go unanswered

QUESTIONS about the environmental impact of the planned LNG industry on Gladstone’s port are simple enough.

Yet it’s not so simple to get a straight answer – or so it would seem.

No one seems too keen to step up to the plate and give us a straight answer and it has almost amounted to a game of commentary pass-the-parcel.

Yesterday the WWF conservation group said large-scale LNG developments proposed for Gladstone was threatening the critical habitats of the snubfin dolphin.

Within the government’s Western Basin Master Plan there are several marine and terrestrial areas directly affected by the developments containing significant environmental value including feeding grounds for dugongs and turtles, but fails to mention any dolphins.

The Observer approached the Gladstone Ports Corporation and asked if any of the LNG developments will be a threat to the dolphin.

“The Western Basin Master Plan doesn’t mention that any dolphins will be at risk with the developments,” the spokesperson said.

“The LNG companies are building the developments so they are responsible for any impact.”

When Liquefied Natural Gas Limited, the company responsible for Fisherman’s Landing, was asked the same question chief executive Maurice Brand said they did not expect any issues in relation to the dolphin population

“However, the very large LNG projects proposed on Curtis Island will require significant dredging and reclamation as is usual in the EIS process, all potential impacts will need to be addressed,” Mr Brand said.

The Observer contacted Curtis Island LNG companies QGC BG Group and APLNG asking who was responsible for LNG developments in the harbour.

“A QGC spokesman said the Gladstone Ports Corporation is responsible for all dredging.

“QGC is committed to working with GPC to ensure any dredging for its project is environmentally and socially acceptable.”

An Australian Pacific LNG and an Origin Energy spokesperson both responded by saying development in the harbour is the responsibility of the Gladstone Ports Corporation.

It seems it may be easier finding a dolphin in the Gladstone harbour than a straight answer.

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