Australian entrepreneur, Dick Smith, has thrown his support behind the campaign to save the Greater Blue Mountains World Heritage Area from a NSW Government proposal to raise Warragamba dam wall. Raising the dam wall would flood up to 65 kilometres of wild rivers and streams within the World Heritage Area to justify new urban sprawl across western Sydney floodplains.
Mr Smith spoke to the campaign with veteran environmentalist Bob Brown on a helicopter flight over the southern Blue Mountains wilderness that would be flooded by raising the dam wall.
Hawkesbury City Council last night voted down a motion to support the raising of the Warragamba Dam wall. Councilors voted 5-7 to reject a Liberal motion to support the dam wall raising, with numerous Councillors voicing concern that they were being asked to vote on a proposal they knew very little about.
The Colong Foundation for Wilderness will be launching its Wild Rivers Campaign in the Blue Mountains later this month. Dr Bob Brown and Bob Debus AM have thrown their support behind the conservation group’s push to save 65 kilometres of World Heritage Listed wild rivers from the proposed raising of Warragamba Dam wall.
Volunteer involvement forms the heart of all community campaigns. The Wild Rivers Campaign, a Colong Foundation campaign formed to protect 65 kilometres of world heritage rivers in the Blue Mountains, is looking for volunteers to baulster its campaign to save 65 kilometres of world heritage rivers from a dam.
Protecting Australia’s wild rivers was a seminal time in the nation’s environmental consciousness. The Franklin River campaign of the 1980s saw the nation come together to save Tasmania’s unique wild rivers and wilderness areas. Unfortunately, some of Australia’s most pristine wild rivers are again under threat.
The Blue Mountains World Heritage Area is under threat if the state government’s plans to raise the Warragamba Dam wall proceed, environmentalists warn.
"Raising the dam will destroy unique environments within the Blue Mountains World Heritage Area, including the pristine Kowmung River wilderness,” said Harry Burkitt from the Colong Foundation.
The Kowmung River
Coming on the heels of plans to rip up native vegetation laws in the city and the bush, conservationists are reeling from today’s announcement to raise of the Warragamba dam wall as it would damage the Greater Blue Mountains World Heritage Area.
The Sydney Morning Herald this morning has reported that a proposal to raise Warragamba Dam by 14m for flood mitigation purposes is the Baird government's preferred approach to managing flood risks in the Hawkesbury Nepean.
The release of the government review in how to manage flooding in Western Sydney is due in April, after the NSW state election.
We fear that this review will recommend the raising of the dam at a time when political sensitivity to the electorate is low.