Blue Wedges Coalition

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Port Phillip bay dredging trial in 2005
Port Phillip bay dredging trial in 2005

The Blue Wedges Coalition is a group formed to campaign against the deepening of Port Phillip Bay in Victoria, Australia.

Concerns raised about the bay dredging include:

  • Toxic sediments – threatening beaches, fish stocks and public health
    • High risk of beach contamination
    • Predicted high levels of toxins in local fish, eels and mussels
  • Serious 2005 damage at The Heads – uncontrollable, continuing rockfall and scour, which even the Port of Melbourne Corporation admits could last 30 years
  • The added effects of sea level rise from channel deepening combined with global warming induced rise, and extreme weather events
  • Flooding in the low-lying coastal areas
  • Lack of public consultation regarding the environmental management plan, and the delay in its release to the public
  • The business case for the project does not appear to be sound.
    • The number of very large capacity container ships claimed to require deeper draught than the Port Phillip Bay channel currently provides has been consistenty overstated by the Victorian Government and the Port of Melbourne Corporation. In 2006 only 0.8% of ships exiting and 1.25% entering the port waited for tide assistance.
  • Large increases in truck traffic on Melbourne roads to service additional container volumes
  • No consideration of carbon emissions for either the dredging process or the long term operation of the Port of Melbourne and associated road traffic
  • Lack of independent monitoring of environmental impacts, and delays in reporting any enviromental impacts
  • Inadequate consideration of impacts on bay flora and fauna. For example, impacts on the Fairy Penguin colony at St Kilda breakwater that will be directly affected by dregding will not be be monitored.

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