The site on which the golf course and mixed tourism resort is proposed is currently an ecological corridor for many native species, some of which are listed on State and National endangered species lists, including the Little Dip Spider Orchid. Should the development receive approval its environmental impact will be enormous, causing unnecessary disturbance, fragmentation and non-native weed colonisation of protected areas.
The Limestone Coast and Coorong Coastal Action Plan
The Limestone Coast is a unique habitat for native flora and fauna. The Limestone Coast and Coorong Coastal Action Plan (specifically, Cell SE9 p346-368 and Cell SE10, p369-400) provides detailed analysis of the environment’s native inhabitants which would be threatened by this (or any further) development to the region.
“There are 42 flora survey sites, 33 opportune flora sites, 109 Herbarium record sites, 12 fauna survey sites, and 164 opportune fauna survey sites. 3286 ha of this cell is remnant vegetation, 26% of the cell area. 177 bird, 8 butterfly, 20 mammal, 14 reptile and 6 amphibian species have been recorded in the cell. Listed fauna includes the EPBC listed critically endangered Orange Bellied Parrot (Neophema chrysogaster); also the State endangered White-bellied Sea-Eagle (Haliaeetus leucogaster), Powerful Owl (Ninox strenua), Eastern Osprey (Pandion cristatus), Little Tern (Sternula albifrons) and Fairy Tern (Sternula nereis) and Swamp Antechinus (Antechinus minimus).”
In addition to the above, the area boasts:
- a number of National and State-registered native plant species, in particular the Little Dip Spider Orchid (endangered) and the Ornate Pink Fingers (vulnerable);
- a High Conservation and Biodiversity Value, with 8 vegetation associations identified as being (currently) in excellent condition;
- a Sanctuary for important Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation (EPBC) bird species of National and State significance including the Southern Emu Wren (endangered) and migratory birds such as the Hooded Plover (vulnerable);
- Wombats and possums once so common to the area are now State-registered (rare) and Kangaroo and Wallaby numbers have significantly decreased.
Marine, Coastal Wetlands and Lakes
The proposed development area is situated in a Coastal Protection Zone and is adjacent to a Marine Protected Area. If approved, the development:
- presents an extreme high risk to the sensitive coastal dunes potentially causing dune blow outs leading to a loss of critical habitat and Heritage Sites;
- is likely to cause contamination through excess nutrient, herbicide and pesticide run off from golf greens, vineyard, beef production and excess from storm water systems;
- risks damage to surrounding lakes, connected via underground dependant ecosystems, and coastal wetlands as they are situated lower in topography with land sloping from the property into Big Dip Lake and Lake Eliza;
- water usage and bore water allocations risk further threat of lakes drying up during dry seasons as altered hydrology and the lower rainfall in the South East already impact on these last remaining wetland areas.
The community responded to the consultation process which ended in March 2016 but are yet to receive any answers to their questions (specifically in how the proposal and its published studies do nothing to stem doubts about environmental impact), or any updates on the proposed development.
Is the development of a luxury tourism resort (or possibly yet more residential suburbs) really worth risking significant devastation to the area’s native land and water habitats, both during construction and with ongoing use?
We welcome you to join our campaign and help us to prevent the golf course from being developed.