Garrett decision on Gorgon means destruction for environment

25th August 2009 - The Australian Greens today slammed the decision by the Minister for Environment Peter Garrett to allow the Gorgon development to go ahead on Barrow Island, saying he is signing off on the destruction of this unique environment.

"There is no way that the environment of Barrow Island can be protected from this development - no environmental conditions can protect the environment of this Island, and it is a nonsense for Minister Garrett to hide behind such conditions. It is inevitable that the island will be degraded," said Greens Senator Rachel Siewert.

"Just today we've heard that Chevron's own environmental consultant gave them advice to locate the processing plant on shore, as the environmental impact to Barrow Island is too great.”

“Barrow Island is an A- Class Nature Reserve. It has been dubbed 'Australia's Ark' for its unique range of endangered species, with 24 species and sub-species preserved on the island, many of which are extinct or endangered on mainland Australia."

“This proposal will have unacceptable environmental impacts on the terrestrial and the marine environment. It simply should not be going ahead on Barrow Island,” Senator Siewert said.

“The Federal Government is once again putting resource development ahead of environmental protection. I must admit I didn't really expect the Minister for the Environment to make any other decision but to give this project the tick as he was clearly given his riding instructions when the Prime Minister announced it last week, however it is still hugely disappointing that the Minister has failed to do his job and protect this Island.”

"We call on the Federal Government to require that the Gorgon development is located on the mainland," concluded Senator Siewert.

Senator Siewert is available for comment today in Broome.

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