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Ti Tree Lake protected

North Coast Nationals MLC Ben Franklin today announced that the NSW Government will introduce stronger protections for Ti Tree Lake north of Broken Head, which includes placing the site on a list of the State’s most sensitive lakes.

“I have been advocating for Ti-Tree Lake to be placed on the Sensitive Lakes Register for months, and I am delighted that Minister Stokes has done just that today,” Mr Franklin said.

           

“This year both Minister Stokes and Aboriginal Affairs Minister Leslie Williams came to Broken Head to meet with me and local Arakwal leader Delta Kay to hear firsthand how important it is to protect the lake.

 

“As the most significant Aboriginal Women’s site in the Byron Shire, I am thrilled that it has been given the protection it deserves,” he said.

 

Planning Minister Rob Stokes today released a draft Coastal Management SEPP for consultation until 23 December 2016.

 

As part of that SEPP the entire catchment of sensitive coastal lakes will be mapped and have stronger controls applied to ensure environmental protection.

 

Mr Stokes acknowledged the strong case North Coast Nationals MLC Ben Franklin had led for the listing of the lake saying the evidence presented on the Lake’s high conservation value, which includes significant native plants and animals, rainforests and wetlands had convinced him of the listing’s merit.

 

“Our coastline plays an important part of life, recreation and business in NSW. Millions of people enjoy the coast each year, including both NSW residents and visitors,” Mr Stokes said.

 

“It’s important that we protect the beautiful coastline and waters of our State and mapping Ti Tree Lake as a sensitive lake is an important step towards improving its protection.”

 

Including Ti Tree on the list of sensitive lakes under the Coastal Management SEPP means the 5.25 hectare lake will be protected, as well as its entire catchment area.

 

Strict planning controls will apply to the site if the SEPP is finalised meaning that development on the site cannot occur unless:

 

•          it’s not likely to negatively impact the ecosystem or surface and groundwater

•          it’s not likely to significantly impact on or be impacted by the coastal processes and features

•          it’s not likely to impact the water quality of the lake

•          it’s not likely to impact native vegetation, animals and their habitats, undeveloped headlands and rock platforms

•          it will not impact Aboriginal cultural heritage and places

•          it incorporates water sensitive design

•          it will not impact on use of the surf zone.

 

The lake and its catchment are also significant in Aboriginal culture, particularly to the Bundjalung women.

 

The lake and part of its catchment area are currently protected under the National Parks and Wildlife Act 1974.

 

The draft SEPP includes strong controls for coastal environment areas that include coastal waters, estuaries, lakes and lagoons to ensure any development proposed in these waterways is appropriately assessed.

 

More information on the coastal reforms can be found at

www.planning.nsw.gov.au/Policy-and-Legislation/Coastal-Reform  

Photo credit – Minister Rob Stokes, Nationals MLC Ben Franklin, Delta Kay.

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