Kimberley Tidal Energy Project still has Fatal Flaws

14thAugust 2011

Greens Member for the Mining and Pastoral Region Robin Chapple MLC has rejected the Kimberley tidal energy project proposal put forward by Tidal Energy Australia last week, saying it has the same flaws now as it did when it was first introduced eight years ago.

“At that stage the plan was firmly rejected by the Environmental Protection Authority on several grounds,” Mr Chapple said.

“This current proposal has not addressed any of the problems that were identified then and should be again rejected on similar ground.

“This is a tidal dam project proposed to be built on Doctor’s Creek near Derby, not a tidal power plant as has been stated by the company TEA. If built, it would see the destruction of a huge swathe of important mangrove habitat, an important refuge for the endangered Northern River Shark and the Freshwater Sawfish.

“Tidal energy using the proposed tidal dam technology will produce little or no greenhouse gas savings because of the huge amount of energy required for construction of the structure; the destruction, decay and methane emissions of the mangroves; the need for a full backup thermal power station; and the requirement for ongoing dredging.

"While I am intrigued by the possibilities offered by true tidal power technologies that do not involve dams and will not damage the ecology of mangrove creeks and other coastal habitats, this is not the case here.

"We want to see Derby powered by tidal energy as much as anybody, but we want it done right the first time. We will not support any project that threatens the ecology of the Derby region, and want to see true tidal power not a concrete seawall built on the mudflat," Mr Chapple said.

For more information please contact Robin Chapple on 0409 379 263 or 9486 8255

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