Dredging of Port Phillip Bay
Georgia McKenzie 11G
Audience: General, those interested in the environment
Purpose: To persuade the reader that the government should not dredge Port Phillip Bay.
The proposed dredging of Port Phillip Bay is a dangerous project that the Victorian State government should not doggedly pursue. The project will cost taxpayers almost 1 billion dollars in labour, tourism losses and other disruptions around the bay. It poses a significant threat to both marine life and humans with the sediment to be dredged described as 'acutely toxic'. Dredging the bay is a project that is not worth the risk to the environment, community or economy and should not be commenced.
The dredging project will put thousands of Melburnians at risk. It is reported in the Environmental Effects Statement that some sediment, as much as 6 million tonnes in the northern end of the bay, is contaminated and acutely toxic.
Dredging the bay will inevitably disrupt this sediment, putting any human or animal that comes in contact with bay water at risk. The extensive fishing and shipping industries in the port make this risk extremely dangerous. Even if safety precautions were taken to protect bay workers and recreational users for the duration of the dredging when the sediment levels are at their highest this will not help to ensure the safety, or health, of families and recreational fishers who may not know of, or realise the importance of safety warnings. By carrying out the channel deepening project the government could potentially be opening itself up to a barrage of litigation from people made ill by the contaminated sediment that will be present in the bay water. The harm dredging could cause is unacceptable and cannot be tolerated by the Victorian public, just as the extensive environmental...