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South East Queensland Regional Environment Coordination Network

c/- BREC, PO Box 479, Morningside QLD 4170; Ph: (07) 3901 5577; Fax: (07) 3899 1953
Incorporating Brisbane Region Environment Council (BREC), BREC Traditional Owners Group,
Sunshine Coast Environment Council (SCEC), Gecko - Gold Coast and Hinterland Environment Council, Toowoomba Region Environment Council (TREC) and the Wildlife Preservation Society Qld (WPSQ)

Media Release — 29 June 2005

State Government continues to plan the execution
of urban bushland in final SEQ Plan.

The final version of the SEQ regional plan is unlikely to provide any extra protection for natural areas inside the so called "urban footprint" say conservationists. The Minister responsible for the Plan, Treasurer Terry Mackenroth, recently stated that open space wasn’t considered to be infrastructure.

"There was no money or commitments in the budget or the SEQ Regional Infrastructure plan to support local authorities working to save open space such as bushland. There was nothing really to address any of the environmental problems that population growth brings to the region," said Michael Petter, Coordinator of the Brisbane Region Environment Council and the South East Queensland Regional Environment Coordination Network.

"Recent announcements to mine Moreton Bay and to extract water from Moreton Island for urban purposes show that the government doesn’t care about coastal vegetation and wildlife and is only concerned with pandering to big business and the development industry," he continued. "We expect this ‘development at all costs’ mentality to be reflected in the final SEQ Regional Plan to be released this Thursday."

"The government could ignore the concerns of a great many residents of SEQ in failing to protect these important natural areas," said Sheila Davis, Campaign Coordinator for Gecko — Gold Coast & Hinterland Environment Council. "Thousands of people wrote to the government with their concerns about this Plan but they have dismissed those submissions as irrelevant. The government should try and discourage further population growth and reduce the impact and any increases."

"This plan will probably do nothing to protect the cultural resources of the Ngugi, Koenpal, Yuggera or Wangerriburra Traditional Owners and is just another step in the cultural genocide of our people" said Shane Coghill Indigneous Coordinator of SEQRECN.

"The government should actually restrict the amount of land for development, not increase it," said Scott Alderson of the Sunshine Coast Environment Council. "There are fundamental limits to growth such as water, climate change, pollution and rising energy process which the government should be addressing, not ignoring. This new version of the plan should be subject to futher public submissons or consultation " he added.

"The SEQRECN members will continue to help local residents fight inappropriate town plans and developments," said Mr Petter. "But the flawed Integrated Planning Act and now the SEQ Regional Plan could make this harder."

"In the end everyone will lose as our quality of life declines and our unique animals and plants are lost to the world and future generations," said Des Boyland of the Wildlife Preservation Society of Queensland.

For further information about this important issue:

Michael Petter Coodrinator — BREC - 3901 5577

Shane Coghill Traditional Owner Coordinator BREC 3901 5577

Scott Alderson — SCEC - 0407 290 029

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