Letters

Cruise ship concern

Ed,

I would like to thank Valley Watch for keeping the people of the Clarence informed. After visiting their stall at the Yamba River Market today, I am greatly concerned regarding the lack of public knowledge of the 4,200 tonne cruise ship which will be docking in Yamba in October 2018.

Did you know about this cruise ship?  I didn’t.  

On September 24, 2017 the NSW Government (Minister for Roads, Maritime and Freight Melinda Pavey, Minister for Transport and Infrastructure Andrew Constance and Member for Coffs Harbour Andrew Fraser) announced a plan to investigate constructing international cruise terminals in Yamba and Coffs Harbour. This being part of the government’s launch of the Future Transport 2056 strategy.  Ms Pavey’s office announced:  “In October 2018, the Cruise Ship Caledonian Sky plans to stop off at Yamba as part of the Australian Coastal Odyssey.”

There have been a few indications over the years of there being a Port in Yamba; it was even mentioned in the Yamba Survey a couple of years ago. If Yamba’ economy is going to increase by this ship docking in Yamba, think again! There is hardly time for a swim? Please have a look at the itinerary for the holiday makers’ short stay in the Clarence. https://www.noble-caledonia.co.uk/tour/1564/australian-coastal-odyssey/itinerary/?search_url_id=0  

I ask myself these questions, what happens in rough weather?  If we think back to the Island Trader, how many times was it forced to stay off shore due to inclement weather? 

This cruise liner is eight times heavier than the Island Trader. What guarantee is there that this vessel will not harm the protected Dirrangun Reef? Have the Yaegl people been consulted? Once the reef is damaged, the damage is forever, I wonder if this has been considered or conveniently ignored? 

I personally think that the Yamba Community including the Yaegl people, Clarence Valley Council and the Chamber of Commerce all need to be in consultation before permission is given to allow such a vessel to come into Yamba waters as this decision affects us all.

The consequences of allowing this vessel into Yamba waters could be catastrophic.

Ilma Hynson, Yamba

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