Residents are concerned over Scrivener Road

Residents are concerned over Scrivener Road

Members of the Scrivener Road Residents Group Monika Baker, Roland Mauch and Dan Raynor are concerned over the proposed gravel pit. Photograph – Kelly Pilgrim-Byrne

Members of the Scrivener Road Residents Group said they were concerned with an alleged proposal by the Shire of Serpentine Jarrahdale to undertake gravel-mining operations on Scrivener Road.

The community-based group were worried the proposed mine would have a significantly negative impact on the environment in the area.

A group spokesman who wished to remain anonymous said two main concerns were raised at a meeting with former shadow minister for environment Chris Tallentire when the group met him in February.

“The reserve contains the largest known colony of the protected Forest-Red Tail Black Cockatoo,” he said.

“It is the only known place in the south west where all three protected Black Cockatoo species nest and forage.”

He also said the other concern raised was about rare flora and the priority-listed flora.

“The flora contained in the reserve is the only significant conservation corridor between the two separate sections of the surrounding Serpentine National Park,” he said.

“Further the reserve has an estimated 1000 suitable nesting trees which are on average 220 years old.”

The spokesman said the shire had failed to rehabilitate and manage the reserve about 20 years after making the commitment to state government agencies it would hand over the site for inclusion in the Serpentine National Park.

“The failure in rehabilitation and management has led to environmental damage of the national park through the spread of weeds and jarrah dieback, disease and the dumping of hazardous material,” he said.

“The shire expending more than $100,000 of local rates and countless hours of staff time over the past 18 months on developing a draft management plan and technical reports for the proposed gravel mine without any certainty that the proposal would go ahead is concerning.”

Shire president John Erren said there was no proposal to develop a mine.

“The shire will be investigating the possibility of sourcing gravel from an existing shire gravel pit located on Scrivener Road while also looking to identify other possible gravel sources within the shire,” he said.

“At this stage the shire is preparing a management plan based on the extraction of gravel in an environmentally positive way.

“The proposal includes the rehabilitation of previously cleared land and the construction of breeding habitat for the endangered Carnaby Cockatoo.”

Mr Erren said the Environmental Protection Authority would assess the shire’s management plan to determine if the proposal was an environmentally positive project.

“This is not a mining operation,” he said.

“The shire is considering accessing an existing gravel pit along with looking for alternative gravel sources to provide all weather surfaces to gravel roads within the shire.

“If the shire recommences the extraction of gravel from the old gravel pit it will be on the basis that it can create a positive environmental outcome.

“The shire is working on a management plan that will involve rehabilitating the existing site.

“The intention of the management plan is to rehabilitate the old gravel pit to a standard that will allow the land to be incorporated into the adjacent National Park in the longer term.”