The Gerroa Environmental Protection Society is hosting a Nature Conservation Council Picnic for Nature this year at Seven Mile Beach

The Picnic will be held on Saturday 21st October at 1pm.

It will be at the Seven Mile Beach Picnic Area at the end of Beach Road, Gerroa.

You can register for the event here.

Please bring a picnic to share and any stories about nature conservation that you have been involved in. This will be a great opportunity to relax and network and perhaps go for a short bushwalk.
Howard H Jones.

Area of Outstanding Biodiversity Nomination

The Seven Mile Beach National Park, together with adjoining native vegetation on freehold and crown lands, forms a vulnerable, albeit disconnected island of biologically significant coastal vegetation.
We propose this area be considered as an Area of Outstanding Biodiversity Value due to its complex association of Endangered Ecological Communities that support a large number of threatened fauna species and one endangered population (as listed under the Biodiversity Conservation Act 2016).
The nomination area represents the largest parcel of coastal vegetation between the Shoalhaven River in the south and Royal National Park in the north and includes one of the most important coastal freshwater
wetlands in NSW.
These values make a significant contribution to persistence of biodiversity in New South Wales.

Protect Aboriginal Heritage on Minnamurra River from Boral’s Destructive Sand Mine

By Howard H Jones

Traditional custodians are not finished with the fight to stop the Boral Dunmore sand mine along the Minnamurra River. Many thought the fight was over after the Independent Planning Commission (IPC) gave it the go ahead, but Aboriginal people who have historical connections with this land, are not giving up.

Dr. Brendan Corrigan has been appointed by Minister Ley to report on an application to protect heritage values under Section 10 of the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Heritage Protection Act 1984. He will be reporting on whether the Aboriginal heritage values in this recently approved sand mine warrant federal protection.

In submissions to the inquiry our small environment group questioned the lack of due diligence in the Department of Planning and Environment heritage advice to the IPC that underpinned this approval. Traditional custodians presented further evidence of the rich heritage values and their cultural connections to the land in the hope that these values will be protected.

There is developing evidence the proposed mine is located on a major Aboriginal occupation site, which makes sense considering the Minnamurra is the largest river in the Illawarra and the river flats would have provided extensive food and other resources.

The full article can be found on the New Bush Telegraph at this site. (in a new window)

The submission to Dr Brendan Corrigan can be viewed here (in a new window)

Stories of Destruction and Regeneration at Seven Mile Beach

Stories of Destruction and Regeneration at Seven Mile Beach

This is a tale of two stories. The first tells of a small environment group’s fight to stop environmental destruction by a sand mining company at Seven Mile Beach near Gerroa. It is a war story covering thirty-five years and with no end in sight. The other is the resurrection story about the regeneration of the land destroyed by this company during that war. Both are remarkable stories of community determination and resilience. 

Story one starts with the clearing of Baileys Island in the mid-eighties. This bushland adjoins Crooked River and Blue Angle Creek at Gerroa.

The vegetation on Baileys Island was remarkable. An assemblage of at least five Endangered Ecological Communities (EECs), it encompassed the only intact coastal zonation of vegetation in our area. The ecology ranged from freshwater wetlands through swamp forests, bangalay sand forest and littoral rainforest to coastal banksia and acacia vegetation.

Read the full story of destruction and restoration here (in a new window)

New Gerroa Sand Quarry Modification



Map showing the existing mine and the proposed “extension”.

Red indicates the current dredge pond.
Light Blue indicates the proposed dredge pond.

While the proposed quarry is mainly on farmland it may have environmental impacts on habitat corridors, groundwater and visual landscapes so we encourage submissions  
We hope that you can make even a small submission objecting to this proposal. Objections need to be in by 04/07/18. We need to get 25 objections.
You can make submissions on the website below by either lodging a .pdf document or writing into the space provided on the webpage on the site:

GEPS submission to Draft Community Strategic Plan

This submission will focus on the need to give greater emphasis in the Plan to environmental issues, including biodiversity protection and climate change.

With regard to community priorities for the CSP, for some reason our group was unaware of the scoping process and didn’t have an opportunity to have an input. We regard protection of biodiversity and planning for climate change adaption as important community issues that should be included in this plan.

Continue reading

GEPS submission to Shoalhaven Council regarding proposed removal of significant vegetation at Shoalhaven Heads

GEPS has prepared this submission to the proposed investigation into the location of a retirement complex at Shoalhaven Heads as well as any proposed LEP zoning review Council may undertake.

GEPS understands that there has been community pressure to locate a proposed retirement complex in biologically important bushland adjacent to the Shoalhaven Heads golf course and wish to inform Council of the significance of this vegetation and the values of the habitat of the Seven Mile Beach ecosystem.

The full submission can be found here.

GEPS submission to Kiama Council on Dune protection

In response to recent suggestions about the removal of dune vegetation at Jones Beach and Werri Beach, GEPS has made a submission to Kiama Council.

The Gerroa Environmental Protection Society urges Council not to modify the vegetation or structure of the sand dunes at Jones and Werri Beaches that is being promoted by the Beach Care group. These dunes play an important role in protecting residents from damaging ocean surges that are predicted to increase in intensity and frequency. They also provide a habitat of native plants and wildlife.

In the past Jones and Werri Beaches have been damaged by destructive east coast low storm events. Council used considerable resources to construct and vegetate these dunes in the early 90s to protect residents and reconstruct dune habitats.

It’s important to acknowledge how well this vegetation helped protect the community during the recent storm surges of 2016.

The full submission can be read here.