Media Release.. Friends of the Earth FNQ 8th August 2016
FoE demands developer stops clearing native bush and immediately remediates damage to habitat of the critically endangered Kuranda Tree Frog!
Yet more habitat of a frog species unique to the Kuranda area has been polluted by site-work on the Barnwell Estate in the Myola area - the site proposed by developer Ken Lee for his "Kur-World" mega-development.
Creeks flowing from the site down to the Barron River, in particular Owen Creek, have been polluted by recent site-works carried out by Mr Lee. Owen Creek is one of a handful of watercourses where populations of the extremely rare Kuranda Tree Frog have been located.
"This pollution is damaging the habitat of a species recognised by the International Union for the Conservation of Nature as critically endangered" said Sarah Isaacs of Friends of the Earth Far North Queensland.
“We call on the developer to stop bulldozing and to carry out remedial work urgently, before heavy rains wash yet more sediment into these crucially important creeks” she added.
Muddy water in Owen Creek became apparent in late 2015, caused by construction of a large dam on the land, which the developer bulldozed without prior approval. He was forced to stop work on the dam until he obtained a permit, granted retrospectively by Mareeba Shire Council in July 2016.
Yet an even larger area on the site has been denuded of vegetarian in recent months. This additional work (see photo below) again appears to have been carried out without regard to the downstream consequences. Turbidity in other nearby creeks such as Warril Creek has also been documented since these additional site-works began.
"The Kur-World proposal is supposedly for an 'ecotourist resort'" said Syd Walker of FoE Far North Queensland.
“Yet the developer has already cleared significant areas of native vegetation and polluted critical wildlife habitat. That's before he even begins preparing the Environmental Impact Statement for his major development proposal." said Syd Walker of Friends of the Earth Far North Queensland.
"Friends of the Earth FNQ believes this biodiverse, largely forested corridor site is inherently unsuitable for large-scale intensive development as proposed.”
“We call for an immediate stop to new works on the site. State and Federal Governments should require the developer to urgently remediate the significant ecological damage he's already caused” he concluded.
For more information contact: Syd Walker 4093 8384 / 0400 746 932 or Sarah Isaacs 4085 0054