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The Campaign - Comments

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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 asset.

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?

Western Australian
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 Alcan

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 2007
Submission of the month - April 2007
Submission of the month - March 2007
Submission of the month - February 2007

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 this region.


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 rejected.

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 Aquifer).

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 the EPA.


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 your court!!!


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 same responsibility.


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 will have.


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, natural area?


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".


The Residents

World Heritage






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