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ACF takes Walker Corp to court over Toondah Harbour project

Business

The Toondah Harbour development is heading back to court after environmentalists appealed a decision by the Federal Government to keep some sensitive documents secret.

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The documents relate mostly to meetings between Walker Corp and the Department of Environment and Energy around the time the Toondah Harbour plan was first referred under national environment law.

The Australian Conservation Foundation is appealing a Federal Department’s decision to refuse access to documents relating to Walker Corporation’s plans for a marina and high-rise apartment complex on sensitive wetlands at Toondah Harbour, near Brisbane.

ACF will ask the Administrative Appeals Tribunal to grant access to the documents.

The project has been delayed for years by concerns that it would impact sensitive wetlands on Moreton Bay and ACF claims the marina and apartments would destroy about 40 hectares of wetlands.

“The wetland is supposed to be protected under Australia’s national environment law, but systemic failures in our laws mean a proposal to wreck this environment jewel on Brisbane’s doorstep have been able to reach an advanced stage in the assessment process,” ACF chief executive Kelly O’Shanassy said.

“Dealings between Australia’s largest property developer – also a major political donor – and our national environmental regulator should not be secret.”

Walker Corp’s proposal is currently being assessed under the national environment law and an environmental impact statement is expected to be released no later than December 2020.

Walker Corp has been contacted for comment.

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