The Upper House of the NSW parliament has been conducting an inquiry into how the planning system can be improved so that people, threatened species and the built environment are protected from the impact of climate change. Sue Higginson from The Greens is chairing the inquiry. The terms of reference were broad and provided an opportunity for individuals, local councils and community groups to comment using local examples of the long list of inadequacies of the system and the resulting environmental destruction. They make interesting reading!
The development application for Westleigh Park was open for submissions until 20 November. STEP’s criticisms of this large project have not been addressed so our submission drew largely from previous ones. Most of the more detailed ecological reports have many inadequacies so we consider that the development application should not be submitted to the Planning Panel until the missing details are covered. The basic problems that we have written about many times remain, namely the mountain bike trails, the use of synthetic turf and the serious and irreversible impacts on Sydney Turpentine Ironbark Forest.