Media Release: Greens condemn Western Harbour Tunnel rubber stamp

NSW Greens MP for Balmain Jamie Parker has condemned the government’s rubber stamping of the Western Harbour Tunnel. 

He labelled the approval process as a sham, saying it ignored overwhelming expert and public opposition to the Western Harbour Tunnel as well as evidence about the significant environmental impact of the project.  

Jamie Parker MP says: 

“Today’s approval shows that no matter how destructive, polluting or unpopular a project is, if it delivers windfall profits to private toll companies it will get a rubber stamp from this government.

“This approval completely disregards the overwhelming number of public and expert submissions which raised serious concerns or objected outright to the project.  

“Global experience of major toll road construction has demonstrated conclusively that projects like this increase air pollution, encourage car use and eventually fill the new capacity they create. This tunnel will lock our city into car dependence and fleece the people of Sydney with expensive tolls.

“Locals in the inner west are living through the nightmare of WestConnex and now they are being told that they will have to face another four years of noise, dust and disruption for a project that won’t even do what it says on the box.  

“The government has made every effort to conceal the environmental impact of this tunnel.

“They tried to hide key documents detailing the extent of damage to our harbour that will be caused by dredging up tens of thousands of cubic metres of toxic sludge. The pollution could risk closing Dawn Fraser Baths indefinitely during construction. 

“We caught the government fudging air pollution modelling with pollutants from vehicles expected to be up to 25% higher than official estimates. 

“It’s disappointing that while we have been fighting this project alongside the community, the NSW Labor Opposition quietly gave their backing to the Liberal’s Western Harbour Tunnel in Parliament last year” he said. 

Ends. 

Friday, 22 Jan 2021

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