As a resident of Cape Paterson, I have become increasingly concerned by the push from developers to encroach upon natural vegetation and wildlife areas in the Bass Coast Shire.
The article in last week’s paper on page 3 “Strong opposition to ‘unnecessary’ land clearing” outlines yet another planning proposal to threaten these natural spaces.
I moved to Cape Paterson on a whim and never left because I fell in love with the sound of birds, koalas in the trees and wide horizons with untouched bushland, broad heathlands and ocean.
It’s fair to say people move to the Bass Coast to be close to nature, to have space and escape the busy, frenetic city life.
Cape Paterson seems to be at the mercy of an over-zealous town boundary extension which doubles the size of this quiet beach village.
Many residents anxiously await the outcome of the State Government’s Distinctive Area Landscapes planning in the hope it may restrict the Northern Development.
At 16 Grasstree Court, Wonthaggi, developers are in essence attempting to extend the Wonthaggi Town Boundary, nibbling at these portions on the edge of the Heathland.
Real estate salespeople pitch Wonthaggi as a secret beach town because you can walk to the beach from Baxter’s Heathland and it’s ten-minutes’ drive away from others.
Imagine all these nibbles eating away completely at the heathland in a few years so that it’s more ‘convenient’ to get to the beach.
Last year this shire council declared a climate emergency to tackle the carbon emissions that are so drastically altering our environment.
Land clearing makes up 22% of the world’s greenhouse gas emissions, according to the most recent report by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change.
This council has a real opportunity to develop sustainable planning which will reflect the community’s concerns and account for the projected population growth.
While more residents are welcome, new developments must take into account the fragility of these eco-systems and the invaluable contribution these natural spaces make to the overall character and vitality of our community.
Leticia Laing, Cape Paterson.