The Blue Mountains World Heritage Institute has backed calls for a moratorium to be placed on any approvals to raise the Warragamba dam wall.
The NSW State Government is currently considering plans to raise the Warragamba dam wall by 14 metres in order to mitigate floodplains in the Hawkesbury-Nepean Valley, which is an area earmarked for new housing developments.
Opponents to the plan say this action would flood up to 1,000 hectares of the Greater Blue Mountains World Heritage area which could result in significant damage to indigenous cultural heritage sites and World Heritage listed rivers and vegetation.
Among those raising their concerns about the plans are former Greens leader, Bob Brown and former Federal Environment Minister, Bob Debus who is quoted as saying; “If the inundation proposal were to proceed the values and integrity of the Greater Blue Mountains World Heritage Area, Blue Mountains national park, declared wilderness, a declared wild river, national heritage and the special catchment area would be significantly degraded.”
The Blue Mountains World Heritage Institute supports a balanced, science based approach to environmental management and works to ensure that Australia upholds its international status as a responsible manager of its World Heritage assets.
With recent coral bleaching events at the Great Barrier Reef attracting global concern and leading to a decline in tourist numbers, the parallels to the Greater Blue Mountains region are clear and make the issue of protecting the environmental and economic sustainability of this region of critical concern, not only to New South Wales residents, but to Australians as a whole.
For further information or to request a BMWHI spokesperson on this issue please email Claire Absolum at firstname.lastname@example.org.