Labor's environment spokesperson to visit Stockton Beach to call for urgent action

In Parliament | 01.02.18

The NSW Labor Opposition today called on the Berejiklian Government to take action on the environmental disaster that is currently unfolding on Stockton Beach.

State Member for Newcastle, Tim Crakanthorp has invited Shadow Minister for Environment, Penny Sharpe, to visit the site of massive coastal erosion that is currently concerning Stockton residents.

Mr Crakanthorp has asked the NSW Environment Minister to visit Stockton and sit down with all stakeholders but has so far received no response. As usual the Minister for the Environment, Gabrielle Upton, is “missing in action.”

Mr Crakanthorp has been raising the community’s concerns with the NSW Government since 2016. However, the Government has failed to take any meaningful action to address the erosion and provide protection to the community and its assets.

The recent king tides have impacted the coastline significantly and after days of wild surf, a rubbish tip has been exposed containing asbestos, and the local child care centre was closed as its playground was teetering over the now-exposed beach line.

Mr Crakanthorp has now launched a petition to save Stockton Beach and is encouraging all residents to sign. If there are enough signatures, the Government will be forced to take notice when they have to debate their reasons for neglecting the issue. 

Quotes attributable to Shadow Minister for the Environment and Heritage Penny Sharpe

“Stockton Beach is a beloved Australian landmark beach that is being neglected by the NSW Government.

“This neglect has contributed to the erosion issues, and with dangerous waste polluting the beach the need for action is more urgent than ever. 

“The Minister for the Environment needs to get out of her office in Sydney and come and see what is occurring here. She needs to sit down with all the affected stakeholders and initiate a constructive plan to address the erosion issues and expedite the clean-up of the waste polluting the ocean. 

“Coastal communities have been waiting for more than a year for the Government to begin their own coastal management reforms to plan for these issues, and they’re fed up with waiting." 

Quotes attributable to Member for Newcastle Tim Crakanthorp

“There is an environmental emergency unfolding on Stockton beach. Friable asbestos was blowing in the wind while the Minister is nowhere to be seen. If this was happening in the Minister’s electorate of Vaucluse it would have been fixed in a heartbeat.

“With the Government prioritising spending $2.5 billion on knocking down and rebuilding stadiums in Sydney over protecting coastal communities like Stockton, it is clear just how out of touch the Liberal Government has become.

“I have asked the Minister to consider categorising Stockton as an erosion “hotspot” to qualify for additional funding support.”