Mayor's video message urges residents to ask is the flight path the right path?
As the deadline for submissions on the proposed Western Sydney Airport draws closer, Blue Mountains Mayor, Cr Mark Greenhill, is making a direct appeal to the community via a video message to be informed and have their say.
“The draft Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) is supposed to look at potential impacts on the community and the environment. The problem is - it doesn’t”, said the Mayor.
The Australian Government released the draft EIS for the proposed Western Sydney Airport, together with a draft Airport Plan, on 19 October 2015, both of which have been heavily criticised by Western Sydney councils, and independent experts, as being grossly inadequate with glaring omissions.
“The independent technical review, commissioned by 11 Western Sydney councils, proved categorically that the draft EIS is not the rigorous and detailed EIS we were promised”, said the Mayor.
“Instead, what we have is a half baked EIS, prepared in a rush that mainly looks at the first 5 years of airport operation.”
“How the community can be expected to make sense of a proposal that is deeply flawed and fails to meet its’ own guidelines, is beyond me”, the Mayor said. “When you are faced with aeroplanes flying over people’s homes and a World Heritage Area 24 hours a day, it is reasonable to expect a thorough and detailed EIS and nothing less”.
The aim of the Mayor’s video message is to inform the Blue Mountains residents of the Western Sydney Airport proposal and the impacts on the community, environment and economy, and encourage people to make their views known.
“When fully operational this airport is projected to have more passenger movements than Dubai”, he said.
“Blue Mountains City Council, and others, has asked the Australian Government to allow more time for the community to respond to the draft EIS and to address the critical concern of unfair flight paths, but, regrettably there is no commitment to do either.
It’s not good enough, and quite frankly, the Blue Mountains and Western Sydney deserves better”, concluded the Mayor.
Council will also be holding an Extraordinary Meeting on Tuesday 15 December at 7.30pm at the Springwood Community Hub where it will consider its submission on the draft EIS. Prior to the meeting there will be a drop-in information stand from 4:00pm-7:30pm with Council staff available to discuss the key issues relating to the draft EIS and a submission booth for the community to make their own submissions. Residents can also send a video message to the Australian Government.
The community is invited and encouraged to attend the Extraordinary Council Meeting.