Bennett promises money for Moneys if LNP win
CONCERNS at Moneys Creek have long troubled the region with no clear long term water quality solution yet in place.
Member for Burnett Stephen Bennett has pledged $300,000 towards Moneys Creek Lagoon rehabilitation, should the LNP win at the upcoming state election.
At the causeway yesterday, Mr Bennett said he was delighted to finally deal with the "30 years of legacy of the environmental catastrophe that does become Moneys Creek".
Mr Bennett has announced the funding to act on recommendations to improve the local waterway.
He said finally, there was a report that ticks all the boxes with regards to long term outcomes for the environment, the Bargara Golf Club and residents.
Mr Bennett said the investment with the golf club could see a staged approach to fixing the creek.
"Initially my vision here is that we start to talk about an aeration capacity within the lagoon," he said.
"But also, a weir across the north arm to allow encapsulation of 20Ml of irrigated water."
Environmental planning will also be included.
Mr Bennett said consultations with residents would include discussion on footpaths and easements as part of the potential future stages.
"We have to deal with the environmental reality that low oxygen levels in Moneys Creek, low levels and high temperature does every year on average give us a significant fish kill here, an environmental disaster that no one else wants to deal with," he said.
"It's important to recognise I'm not advocating for the causeway to be modified in any way in this particular stage because it does deal with the residents capacity to reduce sandflies and mosquitoes."
Bargara Golf Club's Don Smith has been involved with the issue for 12 years and was excited by the announcement.
"On behalf of the club we're very grateful to finally have a solid commitment leading to a solution in the future," he said.
The main concerns for Mr Smith were the algal blooms and the fish kills and he described the site as a "sediment trap" for run off.
Having been talking to a retired environmental scientist, Mr Smith said a recommendation for Stage 1 was to run piping from the ocean, under the creek, through the existing pipes and deliver the water to the top end of the lagoon.
"It would be solar activated and deliver 250 cubic metres per hour, therefore the entire waterway, the water in the lagoon would be replaced every 10 days.
"It's very cost effective, because it cost the council a lot of money to take the caps off to give it some flows on the high tides with the full moon.
"It's a no-brainer, an absolutely no-brainer."
Mr Smith said the current government partially funded the most recent study, which had some useful information but not enough direction by his account.
"I understand that they're no longer interested in putting any more money into it," he said.
Mr Smith said the fact that the golf club would be prepared to work with government and landholders on the issue.
He thought $300,000 had a "good chance" of covering the whole job.
Shadow Minister for Environment, Science, the Great Barrier Reef and Tourism David Crisafulli said his role would not only be the source of funding, but also one of finding the balance between environmental stewardship and doing what's right by the community.
"I think that is the reason why it's been put in the 'too hard' basket," he said.
"That will end now, after half a century of paralysis via analysis, it's time to take that information and do something with it.
"I think there's a sensible solution that ticks the environmental box and also the community good box."
Mr Crisafulli said when discussing aeration, reduction of sediment and harvesting a small amount of water to beautify things, "you'd be hard pressed to find anyone who doesn't say 'yes please'".
He said while it was refreshing to hear that $300,000 should cover the project, if it required further stages they were going to "see this job through".