HIGHLY impressive. That’s the word to describe the first public performance of the shire’s new CEO, Linda Cardew. She was assured, polished and articulate as she made an impromptu address to the media yesterday which outlaid her very strong list of credentials which would seem to set up her enormously well for the job.
Finding this talent in our own backyard, so to speak, is very satisfying and indicative of the pool of talent in the shire.
We wish her well and congratulate the councillors, staff and recruitment consultants who have successfully ticked another box on the DSC’s formidable to-do list.
If it hadn’t registered too loudly before, it has now – the dredging issue is not just about Abbot Point. The expansion of Cairns Port is a concern for many people closer to home as they ponder the fact that the waste from the proposed port works will be far bigger, almost double, that of Abbot Point. If modelling delivered to GBRMPA holds much accuracy, then long-term effects of sediment drifting north would be bad news for the health of the lagoon in our region. Another 800,000 cubic metres will be added to the pile every year . . .
Protestors have every reason to question the dumping and probably even the need for the expansion of the port if it’s so costly in expenditure and in the effect on the reef which after all is the region’s biggest drawcard.
Perhaps the port expansion will not proceed, if the EIS due in May is too damning, or perhaps the silt will be dumped onshore.
Whatever the case, a protest is not a wasted action or merely symbolic it reminds decision makers that all the stakeholders must be listened to, not just some, and they can not push the envelope of community acceptance without a backlash.
And what of GBRMPA’s position lately, between the devil and the deep blue sea?