Carroll backs GKI developers after report on GBRMPA concerns
CAPRICORN Enterprise CEO Mary Carroll has branded as "political mischief" comments in a report that claims the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority identified serious concerns with the GKI development that it later approved.
Ms Carroll said yesterday that it was more than a year ago that local, state and federal governments had approved the $600million Great Keppel Island development.
She said the rigorous application process that developers Tower Holdings had already gone through was appropriate.
"The fact that Tower had to engage over 90 consultants and spent millions of dollars for the application process, there is no doubt in my mind that governments would not have approved this application without rigorous assessment and very stringent conditions," she said.
"This appears to be very much political mischief by the Greens."
The ABC news report which was based on Freedom of Information documents also contained comment from Greens senator Larissa Waters who said she was worried GBRMPA was coming under political pressure to approve things.
The report stated that "in approving the development's marina and sewage systems, the marine park authority found the proponent's environmental impact statement was contradictory, vague and missing a substantial amount of information".
Project manager Anthony Aiossa responded yesterday, saying Tower had "worked long and hard" with all levels of government to develop the EIS.
"The story on the ABC indicates that the GBRMPA had some concerns with the disposal of treated effluent," he said. "Once those concerns were raised with us, we addressed them and revised the design accordingly."
A GBRMPA spokesperson said that when concerns, which related to a proposed sewage discharge pipeline and impacts on water quality and coral communities of GKI's fringing reefs, were discussed with the applicant, the design was revised.
The spokesperson said the GBRMPA issued two permits which allowed for construction of submerged and buried utilities pipeline for potable water, electricity and telecommunication and for the construction and operation of a 250-berth marina.
"Both of these permits were approved with strict conditions to help protect biodiversity, heritage and social values of the marine park," the spokesperson said. "The conditions, which the proponent must meet, also address public concerns raised in the public submission process."