EPA decision sparks debate over Point Grey marina proposal

Proposal: Point Grey Development Company Pty Ltd and Tian An Australia want to construct a 300-berth onshore marina, which would require the construction of a 2.5 kilometre navigation channel across the Harvey Estuary.
Proposal: Point Grey Development Company Pty Ltd and Tian An Australia want to construct a 300-berth onshore marina, which would require the construction of a 2.5 kilometre navigation channel across the Harvey Estuary.

The potential for a new marina on Mandurah’s estuary is one step closer as a report released this week states the project has no new environmental concerns.

Proponents Point Grey Development Company Pty Ltd and Tian An Australia want to construct a 300-berth onshore marina.

The project would include retail, recreation and tourism facilities on the western side of the Point Grey peninsula, and require the construction of a 2.5 kilometre navigation channel across the Harvey Estuary.

Environment Minister Stephen Dawson held reservations over the proposal and sent it back to the Environmental Protection Authority (EPA) last year for further assessment – but this has resulted in no new concerns.

“The EPA was satisfied that the existing implementation conditions would continue to manage and mitigate impacts of the proposal,” Chair Dr Tom Hatton said. 

“The EPA has supported a request to extend the time limit to begin construction by August 1, 2022.” 

The final decision on the project lies with Minister Dawson, who confirmed he had received the EPA report and would consider its recommendations.

“There is no statutory timescale for this process,” he said.

“The EPA’s report covers the key environmental concerns of impacts to flora and vegetation, terretrial and marine fauna, and water quality.

“The next step in the process is to consult with other decision-making Ministers, namely the Ministers for Water and Lands.”

Shire of Murray chief executive Dean Unsworth said the council remained supportive of the project.

“Whilst there has been concern, mainly regarding environmental impacts of the proposal, detailed scientific studies have demonstrated that the impacts can be effectively managed,” he said.

“[The project] will further establish the Peel region as a must-visit location on the tourism map and boost the region’s long-term economic prosperity through job creation and increased revenue.”

Peel Chamber of Commerce and Industry general manager Andrew McKerrell said he expected a local employment boost if the project went ahead due to procurement rules.

Tian An Australia and the Peel Harvey Catchment Council were approached for comment.

EPA Report 1621 is available at www.epa.wa.gov.au.