The Campaign - Comments
Find other ways to help the Halt
the Salt campaign.
Latest Submission Comments
When you fill out the submission you are given the opportunity
and plenty of space to add your own comments if you wish. Our thanks
to those who have done so and some are reproduced below:
Submission of the month - January 2009
The proposed solar salt mine by Strait\'s
at Exmouth Gulf is utterly ludicrous. It is well known the clearing
of land acidifies oceans in the immediate vicinity and adds toxic
sediment that threatens viability of nature\'s marine systems of
life. In addition, the marine life of the world\'s oceans are already
under severe pressure to adapt rapidly to changes imposed by GHG
emissions acidification of the world\'s oceans and rising temperatures.
Acidification and warming of the oceans are dissolving coral reefs,
causing death of coral, and destruction of breeding grounds. To
choose to add another lost breeding ground to this existing calamity
of declining marine nurseries is irresponsible management of valuable
and lucrative natural assets, that are economically irreplaceable.
Adding to this dilemma is the increasing
chemical and physical pollution from the rapid expansion of human
population (85% of Australians live on or very near the coast).
This demography trait is applying enormous pressure on coastal and
marine systems of providing life. To add sudden and enormous impacts
such a large project will incur in its development, never alone
the disastrous consequences of a natural climate change calamity
having potential to pollute and destroy the mangrove nurseries (which
statistically is almost certain to occur at some point in the near
future)is utterly ludicrous and irresponsible; especially when considering
longer term issues.
Australia can expect an influx of
migrants from global warming, and from its own needs to expand its
economy to contend with the world's expanding population. The natural
beauty of the coastal region proffers lucrative housing prospects
that can be managed far more safely, and its development managed
to impose a lot less detrimental impact on the marine and terrestrial
environments. Salt is a low earner and employer, that is, and always
will be, a highly competitive industry returning limited margins.
To destroy the potential of housing development by imposing a toxic
solar salt mine is poor business management of a valuable natural
Desalination plants will become more
proliferate as climate change and expanding populations dictate.
The saline water discharged from desalination plants has higher
concentration of salts than that found in the gulf of Exmouth. And,
the cost of pumping sea water has already mostly been accounted
for. As development of technologies advance efficiency of desalination
plants, the mining of salt from desalination plants will make unviable
the Strait\'s solar salt mine operation. If the project goes ahead,
the reclamation of the land will be cost prohibitive and Australia
will have lost an opportunity to extract far greater economic benefit
from the use of the land. In addition, the natural terrestrial and
marine, plus humanity's environments, will have benefited.
Submissions of the month - November 2008
A development such as this
will change forever the pristine environment of the Exmouth Gulf
with possible consequences also for the abutting Ningaloo Reef.
The majority of Exmouth residents rely on the uniquenesss of this
area for their livelihoods with consistent growth in eco- tourism
market being seen each year. Indeed, Exmouth is a tourist town,
and as such the very things that bring tourist here need to be protected.Eco-
tourism is a long term, sustainable industry that will way outlast
the purported 100 years of the salt mine. Straits Resources have
in no way indicated that this development will be beneficial for
the local community. No jobs for locals have been promised or even
training to ensure that local residents are employed. The mines
development will have little impact on job creation in town but
a huge impact on the enviroment and the burgeoning tourist industry.
Considering all this, why risk it?
As a recreational fisherman, I have fished the Exmouth
Gulf area for 15 years. In general over that time there has been
little notable decline in fish stocks or ecological damage or pollution
in this beautiful area. In addition, I regularly enjoy prawns delivered
to me from the region and it is my understanding that the prawn
industry is strong and sustainable. This leads me to the conclusion
that the Exmouth region to date has been managed to an acceptable
and sustainable level. From the information at hand, such as the
EPA report, and from plain logic it is obvious to me that the Straits
Salt project will have a significant detrimental effect on the local
environment, the prawn fishery and therefore the fish that feed
on these prawns. I implore you to listen to the EPA and the voice
of the people who elected you to government and, therefore, to reject
this project outright. As the project consortium nor the EPA do
not appear to be able to come up with some workable recommendations
that could make this project environmentally acceptable, I urge
you to make this rejection firm and final so as not to waste further
government resources on this matter.
We live in a time of serious detrimental impact to global
marine and terrestrial ecosystems due to climate change, oil and
mineral exploitation, illegal and insufficiently managed fisheries,
pollution and coastal development. We must think long and hard about
the decisions we make, especially those of us in positions of authority
within government, with the power to approve or disapprove a project,
which will add yet another stress to our environment. Ecosystems
are inherently fragile and although it is believed that there are
certain levels of resillience, recent research is suggesting that
there may actually be very limited functional redundancy within
ecosystems. Every species has evolved to perform a specific role
and is therefore irreplaceable. Similarly each individual ecosystem
is essential for the health of wetlands, seas and entire oceans.
This means potentially no resillience to an ecological phase shift,
and if a shift to an unhealthy state occurs there may be no potential
mechanism of recovery. One possible phase shift is to a completely
barren sea floor where not even algae can establish, resulting in
a marine desert with no associated floral or faunal assemblages.
A project such as the proposed salt mine will jeopardise the health
of an entire ecosystem, the Exmouth Gulf, which will have massive
implications for WAs biodiversity and the health of surrounding
ecosystems by providing a barrier to dispersal and connectivity.
All this to produce some salt? There is no need for an urgent boost
to WAs economy as WA has sufficient mineral resources and successes
in other areas. In addition, the salt mine will threaten established
sources of revenue such as tourism, fisheries and other businesses
in the area. As a concered individual, budding marine ecologist
and molecular biologist and as an Australian citizen who has spent
most of his life in WA, I urge you to please consider the impact
of this salt mine and the foolishness and repercussions of pressured,
hasty decisions which are made solely on a financial basis. How
long our environment and ecosystems stay healthy is now a direct
result of human action and proper government and management decisions,
informed by science and environmental impact agencies. Please think
long and hard about the consequences and potential destruction of
one of the worlds most pristine natural environments and arrive
at the logical conclusion to reject the proposed salt mine. Protect
our oceans and ecosystems to protect our future.
Dear Sirs, Although I am so far away I really do understand the
damage that can be caused with large scale extraction processes.
Take a look at what Alcan have done to the beautiful North Coast
of Jamaica. Not only have they caused havoc to the Eco structure
of that beautiful Island tHey have caused health problems among
the local people and no doubt the Fauna and Flora of the immediate
Area.They have created a real eyesore along the coastline directly
effecting the Island's Tourist Industry, it's largest source of
income most importantly, the earnings from Foreign Currency. Surely
Something to THINK about. Yours Most Sincerely. Jo Shaw x from Newcastle
Upon Tyne, England U.K. Not far from another Area of Natural Beauty,
The Northumbrian Coast being similarly spoiled by the same company
Submissions of the month - October 2008
If the government approves Straits
Resources salt mine and ignoring their own interdepartmental environmental
advice and others that they employ, who might they be representing?
They are not representing the majority of current or future generations
of Australians who have a right to experience and enjoy the fruits
of unspoilt environments such as Exmouth Gulf in a sustainable manner.
There is already a balance of productivity
in our Gulf, why risk it? There is tourism, water sports, aquaculture,
recreational fishing, commercial fishing and most importantly a
natural nursery in the mangrove area to regenerate stocks of all
its marine life. The latter aspect most necessary to deal with the
re-generation and natural depletion of life through cyclones, disease
and human taxing.
Tourism is the primary sustainable
activity of Exmouth Gulf which will increase in importance as we
see much of the worlds remaining natural environment being destroyed.
Exmouth Gulf also provides an invaluable
source of seafood, another aspect increasing in importance as we
see much of the worlds natural freshwater water resources diminishing
and other food producing challenges. I hope parliamentarians will
enjoy their SALT WITHOUT THE PRAWNS, WITHOUT THE CRABS, WITHOUT
THE SQUID, WITHOUT THE FISH, WITHOUT THE BUGS AND CRAYs.... if...
they support Strait's rape of our resources.
Based on the affect of other salt
mines, once destroyed, the area at stake could not regenerate in
our lifetime and possibly our childrens' if at all.
The productivity of the Gulf is real
and far more tangible than the empty promises of shallow marketing
campaigns suggesting 'jobs and wealth for locals' from aggressive/intrusive
land developers that the Exmouth community has had to endure. And
then there is the unmentionable PRICE to all of that.
Make the decision sound for the long
term. Take no risks, the price is not worth it. Do it with REALITY.
Submission of the month - May
Submission of the month - April
Submission of the month - March
Submission of the month - February
Submissions of the month - June
I was appalled to hear that Straits
claimed the Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation
(CSIRO) and the Australian Institute of Marine Science (AIMS) had
endorsed and undertaken research on the environmental and economic
sustainability of the salt mine project, when neither organisation
had ever supported research or endorsed the project! An organisation
which will falsify claims in this manner is not to be trusted.
As a recreational fisherman I completely
object to any potential impact on the ecosystems relating to the
Exmouth Gulf. This area provides a pristine aquatic environment,
second to none, that attracts thousands of people like me every
year. This is far too important to ignore. Please do not mess with
The fact that Straits Salt has no
means of securely protecting the marine life and enviroment, until
new technology becomes available, should be sufficient reason to
reject their bid. Fortunately there are many significant arguements
identifing risk to and possible destruction of one of the best marine
enviroments in the world to evidence why this project should be
Finally it is important that economic
principals are applied. Establishing a new business producing a
product that is not in short supply, at the risk of losing 2 highly
productive and lucrative industries with active economic benefit,
is unviable and just plain stupid.
I am a West Australian, I was born
here. I love to travel but I always come back to WA because of it\'s
amazing natural beauty. I know a lot, if not most, West Australians
feel the same way. The mind-boggling marine life of "up north"
has to be seen to be believed.
We are privileged to be living in
a time of vastly improved environmental awareness. We have the capacity
and responsibility to make intelligent, informed decisions regarding
any future developments that will impact on the treasured environment
and wildlife of WA.
I have been informed that Straits
Resources were required to apologise for delivering misleading information
regarding the environmental impact assessment (or lack there-of)
of their proposed salt operations in the Exmouth Gulf. This does
not sound like a company that can be trusted to care adequately
for our natural environment
I strongly support the preservation
of the Exmouth Gulf.
And yet again I am disheartened by the Environmental
Protection Authority EPA.....who are they and how did they get the
power to give the go ahead for such environmentally damaging projects
over and over again.(Mining of the Tuart Forests by Cable Mines
and the now go ahead for Water Corps extraction from Yarragadee
Why is it that money and big business always
talks to the detriment of sustainable environment. Lose biodiversity
and the foundations of all creativity crack, no amount of money
can buy back balance and harmony.
I want to know who is elected to represent
I am sick to death of writing formal requests
to government departments to prevent our environment being destroyed
by money grabbing business enterprises. At one point i would have
written a courteous and diplomatic letter now in the face of water
shortages, global warming and a blatant misuse of natural resources
I am cutting to the chase as it appears no one listens to diplomacy.
Stop mucking up our environment and plan for our kids future, its
probably already too late, don't make it a catastrophe. balls in
I wish for the next generations to be able
to learn from and responsibly use the resource of sheer endless
biodiversity, which is now only found in very limited places on
this plant. Their loss is not replaceable. I want future generations
to have the opportunity, to see the greatness of our ecosystem as
presented by some coral reefs. After all the damage we have done
already to the biodiversity of this planet, I want you to take up
your responsibility and avoid doing anymore.
We live a very comfortable lifestyle today and therefore there is
absolutely no excuse for not looking out for the next generations
and secure their future. I therefore strongly and sincerely oppose
this project. It is on us to secure the future and you have the
Additionally, ecotourism is a constantly
growing and important branch of tourism and of vital importance
to the Exmouth region. You are risking big decrements in tourism
activity in this area due to this project.
We and friends of ours overseas have visited the Exmouth region.
We and them would like to return and are very concerned, when we
heard about this project.
Thirdly, the coastline of Australia is tremendous
and there is no excuse, to find a place with much less sensitivity
to the impact of such a project on biodiversity. That is, if this
project is necessary at all.
I am on the fence - I believe that the town
could do with more industry to generate jobs and benefit all, however
I have some concerns over the environmental impact that such a project
If salt is the issue here, I suggest looking
in the Western Australian wheat belt region, another current environmental
issue! There is plenty of excess salt that farmers would be happy
to get rid of. We already have mines in Useless Loop, Onslow, Lake
McLeod and Port Hedland so why another?
It's an outrage that this is even being
considered. Money is the butt of all evil and lets face it - that's
what this is about. Selfish selfish selfish.
"This region has potentially more economic
value as an eco-tourism destination than it does as a salt mine.
Development of this region should not risk this potential or the
existing commercial activities in the surrounding regions. "
I would like to come back some time with my kids (2 and 5)and I
would like to show them this great place as it was in 1999.
After reading some other comments, all completely
right, one stuck out and that is the true fact that australia is
well known for it's great beaches and amazing water life, that's
why people travel such distances to see. Why damage that, and deny
future generations from experiencing such a wonder. Especially at
an era where the world understands the devastation industralisation
can do, use that knowledge and open your eyes.
As a Canadian who has spent a great deal
of time in and around the Exmouth area, I would be shocked, stunned,
and horrified if this beautiful area were laid to waste. I hope
that the need for natural areas would not be swept under the carpet
for the almighty dollar.
as a regular visitor of the Exmouth Region
which is, for my family and friends, the most beautiful land and
sea area in Western Australia we wish to express our concern about
this new project. We already had been strong supporters of the "save
ningaloo reef" campaign and we are again supporting this environmental
protection project. The impact of such huge solar salt production
plants on the sea, sub-sea and land habitat is fatal. We know this,
and therefore we invite you to visit the huge production plants
on the Mediterranean sea near Marseille in Camargue, from our regular
visits in the Camargue in our neighbourhood.
We are afraid that beside the impact on the environed this project
will have a very bad influence on the Exmouth region tourism as
you can see it already in the Dampier Region.
We hope you reconsider your opinion about this devastating project.
Given the fragility of most of the world
its climate and its ecoclimate this is an unprecedentedly stupid
and wicked thing to propose. I hope that the government of Australia
will see sense and stop this before it is too late.
Here is a chance for the government to show
the people of Australia that they have a environmental bone in their
governing "body". For once can the focus shift away from
the bottom line of the ledger. Australia seems to want to follow
the US lead in a lot of things and the obsession with the dollar
would be one of those. To me this would seem a no brainer; why would
anyone want this monstrous development to go ahead in such a beautiful,
I am incredibly concerned at the degree of
dredging required for this project not just in the initial setting
up phase but more so the long term annual dr3edging required to
keep the channel and loading harbour functional. The Northern Gulf
area is a recognised dugong area largely so due to the large fields
of sea grass. Dredging creates a huge ring of turbidity with sediments
settling on sea grass making photosynthesis difficult and sometimes
impossible. The loss of these large areas of seagrass will have
a direct impact of the dugong populations here which rely on the
seagrasss for food, not to mention the further effects throu7gh
the trophic levels of biota in this area.
I have lived in Exmouth and experienced the
beauty of Exmouth Gulf. It is an incredibly fragile ecosystem that
has not had sufficient research undertaken on its ecology. The construction
of salt works on the eastern side of the gulf is a travesty and
we should ensure that further research into the workings of the
Gulf is performed before even contemplating construction. This has
the huge potential to destroy the fragile mangrove and seagrass
ecosystems that exist in the Gulf and subsequently impact upon important
fisheries and larger marine vertebrates that depend upon the stability
of the Gulf for survival. As with the Maud's Landing marina proposal,
it would be political suicide to progress with this development.
Earlier Submission Comments
"As a West Australian currently living
in Sydney working for the NSW Department of Environment and Conservation
I can only say that I have never seen a coastline as beautiful as
the Exmouth Gulf. Our WA coastline in itself is amazing but the
Exmouth Gulf is definitely the standout performer. I have also had
the pleasure of visiting the Exmouth Gulf many a time and each time
is as exciting as the first. I can definitely vouch for the environmental
risks this project will have on the ecosystem and biodiversity in
general. It's essential we take care of these systems to ensure
we aren't adding species/colonies/communities to our endangered
lists and continuing to ensure the stability of this fantastic marine
environment for our us as well as future generations to enjoy. DON'T
TAKE THE RISK....HALT THE SALT".
"This region has potentially more economic
value as an eco-tourism destination than it does as a salt mine.
Development of this region should not risk this potential or the
existing commercial activities in the surrounding regions. "
"I am currently residing in England,
but I am Australian born and proud. I have decided to travel a bit
of the world before I come home to Perth to settle down. What I
have seen so far are many beautiful and old cities around Europe
and England. But nothing compares to the natural beauty of Australia,
especially that of the North of WA. Our state is one of the last
untouched spectaculars in the world so please don't ruin this for
my children. We don't have an old country. People don't travel
to Australia for the old cathedrals or statues; they come to see
what they can't at home, untouched beaches, masses of different
animals living in their natural environment and the beautiful and
rugged landscape that I so proudly call home. Do not industrialize
the one thing that can’t be replaced or seen anywhere else."
"At this time of our global destructiveness
and greed, it seems even more important to act with restraint and
care towards our physical environment. We can all contribute to
taking care and giving deeper thought to the fragility of our eco
system so that it may be preserved and enhanced for our benefit
and the generations of the future. Let us act in ways that demonstrate
our commitment to a present and a future of care and consideration,
rather than greed.
Surely there are smarter ways to produce
salt, given the high salt problems in areas such as the Murray Darling
basin - I strongly oppose this development on the grounds that it
poses too great a risk to this fragile and important eco-system.
I will be talking about this with my 6 and 8 y/o daughters and I
will be talking to them about your role in this.
"What's a bittern Dad?
It's the taste in your mouth you get when the EPA rolls over and
rubber stamps big business."
They are already annoyed and dismayed about
the rock art fiasco."
"I have been a resident of the Pilbara
for over 16 years and exmouth and it's coastline are one of our
holiday spots. We need to look after our environment and natural
land marks. To put something like this there will destroy not only
the marine life and it's surrounds but also the holiday destination
for many!! Just like the fertiliser plant is killing wildlife and
flora around it now!! It's a disgrace."
"Look, I understand you've probably
received this email 100 times and it most likely doesn't mean anything
to you. But you must understand that Exmouth and all it's inhabitants
mean the world to some of us. Why you must persist in trying to
destroy it is beyond me".