Friends of Grasslands
supporting native grassy ecosystems
PO Box 987
Civic Square ACT 2608
Phone: 02 62.. ....
Referral Business Entry Point, EIA Policy Section (EPBC Act)
Approvals and Wildlife Division
Department of the Environment, Water, Heritage and the Arts
GPO Box 787
Canberra ACT 2601
Googong Township Urban Development, NSW
Reference Number: 2011/5829
FOG notes that the proposed Googong Township Urban Development will have a small impact on the pink tailed worm lizard (PTWL), but that the design has, as far as possible, avoided environmentally sensitive areas. We also note that Dr Will Osborne has concluded that, provided the measures implemented in the Biosys report are implemented, that “the provision of the pink-tailed worm lizard conservation area and the supporting management measures proposed would not result in a significant negative impact upon the species”.
While in principle we are opposed to any development having a negative impact on vulnerable and endangered species such as the PTWL, we support the establishment of a PTWL conservation area, and ask that sufficient resources are made available under this referral to ensure implementation of the listed management actions and ongoing management of (and mitigation of urban impacts on) both the conservation area and the buffer zone into the long term. In regard to the 20 m buffer zone around the conservation area recommended by Dr Osborne, it isn’t clear to us on reading the documents as to whether this buffer zone has been included in the final referral (as well as being included in the Biosys report). If not, our view is that the buffer zone is essential and should, as recommended by Dr Osborne, be of lower quality habitat, i.e. not impinge on the high quality habitat areas.
FOG is a community group dedicated to the conservation of natural temperate grassy ecosystems in south-eastern Australia. FOG advocates, educates and advises on matters to do with the conservation of grassy ecosystems, and carries out surveys and other on-ground work. FOG is based in Canberra and its more than 200 members include professional scientists, landowners, land managers and interested members of the public.
14 February 2011