Australian Greens spokesperson for Healthy Oceans, Senator Peter Whish-Wilson, warns advocates for the sinking of a naval vessel in Skeleton Bay not to get ahead of themselves with it likely that the environmental approval process still has years to run. Senator Whish-Wilson has sought and received confirmation that no approvals have been applied for yet under the Dumping at Sea Act or the EPBC Act at this stage.
Senator Whish-Wilson said, ““The proposed scuttling of the HMAS Darwin in Skeleton Bay seems like a fishing exercise at the moment if the Tasmanian government haven’t yet engaged with the Federal Environment Department over the approvals required to dump wrecks at sea.
“The approvals process for dumping at sea is complicated and requires intensive scientific assessment and formal community consultation. The Greens will be watching to make sure that none of this process is short-circuited or simply a box ticking exercise.
“Anyone thinking of a 2019 scuttling date seems to be dreaming given the Tasmanian government haven’t put the money towards it and applied for approval. If you wanted to invest $6 to $10 million in Tasmania’s tourism industry you would put it towards better managing and resourcing our National Parks rather than this”, he concluded