Mayor asks: Is flight path right path?

As the deadline for submissions on the proposed Badgerys Creekairport draws closer, Blue Mountains mayorMark Greenhill has made adirect appeal to the community via a video message.

“The draft Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) is supposed to look at potential impacts on the community and the environment. The problem is – it doesn’t,”said the mayor.

The Australian Government released the draft EIS for the proposed airport, together with a draft airport plan, in October. Both have been heavily criticised by western Sydney councilsand independent experts.

“The independent technical review, commissioned by 11 western Sydney councils, proved categorically that the draft EIS is not the rigorous and detailed EIS we were promised,”said the mayor.

“Instead, what we have is a half baked EIS, prepared in a rush that mainly looks at the first fiveyears of airport operation.

“How the community can be expected to make sense of a proposal that is deeply flawed and fails to meet itsown guidelinesis beyond me,”hesaid. “When you are faced with aeroplanes flying over people’s homes and a World Heritage Area 24 hours a day, it is reasonable to expect a thorough and detailed EIS and nothing less.”

The aim of the mayor’s video message is to informresidents of the proposal and the impacts on the community, environment and economy, and encourage people to make their views known.

“When fully operational this airport is projected to have more passenger movements than Dubai,”he said.

“Blue Mountains City Council, and others, has asked the Australian Government to allow more time for the community to respond to the draft EIS.

“It’s not good enough, and quite frankly, the Blue Mountains and western Sydney deserves better.”

Council will holdan extraordinary meeting onTuesday,December 15 at 7.30pm at the Community Hub in Springwood where it will consider its submission on the draft EIS. Before the meeting there will be a drop-in information stand from 4-7pm with council staff available to discuss theissuesand a submissionbooth for the community to make their own submissions.

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