Urgent Meeting with Environment Minister sought - Renewal of the Western Port Ramsar Site Management Plan

The Western Port Ramsar Management Plan was produced in 2003,

with a great deal of input from local conservation groups, especially

WPPC (Westernport & Peninsula Protection Council),PICS (Phillip

Island Conservation Society), Bird Observers Club and VWSG

(Victorian Wader Study Group) Inexplicably however these groups 

were not informed of the current review of the Managment Plan.

 

WPPC and PICS have been actively campaigning to protect and

preserve Westernport since 1970.  In the 1980’s we lobbied successfully for 

Westernport bay to be listed as a Ramsar site. We

made detailed input to the Western Port Ramsar Management Plan

between 2001-03. We are astounded that we were not informed of a 

review of the Management Plan that has been taking place this year.

We belatedly and only informally heard about the review one week 

before the final consultation was to take place and after contacting

the convener, were invited to participate. However, our participation

was too late to make any meaningful input to the priorities

established at previous meetings.

 

We, the undersigned, are very concerned that the Draft plan

release in January will not address the most serious risks to the bay.

We request an urgent meeting with you to explain our concerns

about the Management Plan Review

document.

 

We also urge you to delay publication of the Draft to allow adequate

consultation with these community stakeholders.