Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Spoil Trucks from NorthConnex

An article by Bill Aitken in the Monthly Chronicle discusses the potential for big problems with the spoil to be excavated from the NorthConnex tunnel under Pennant Hills Road.  Present plan is to remove it through Wilson Road and Lock Maree Avenue, with an estimated 1500 trucks a day.

What seems disconcerting is that, apparently at present there is no planned destination for the 2.5 million cubic metres of soil and rock that will be removed!  This seems such a major issue that it would be surprising if no firm plan exists!

Using Wilson Road would work with trucks taking the spoil off to the east or north, turning left onto Pennant Hills Road and returning around Observatory Park and then left off Pennant Hills Road.  But if the trucks have to go west or south that could involve them trying to cross the three lane traffic to turn right around Observatory Park - definitely NOT a viable option!

Answers please, NorthConnex!

Meanwhile, did you know about the huge Tunnel Support facility being planned for the space between Pennant Hills Road and Killaloe Avenue, west of Wilson Road?  Read about it at

Monday, August 25, 2014

Health Issues of NorthConnex

You are encouraged to attend an independent forum, presented by the medical and scientific community, on The Health Impacts of Air Pollution in Relation to the NorthConnex project.

Invites have been extended to Premier Mike Baird, Barry O'Farrell and other representatives to attend and find out how this unfiltered stack will affect their voters. Feel free to also put pressure on all of our representatives to attend and to get involved on our behalf - links are available on our website http://www.scapsgroup.org/get-involved.html.

Thursday 4th September from 7-9pm

Leslie Hall, Barker College High School, Pacific Highway, Horsnby

Parking onsite, under tennis court, cnr. Clarke & Unwin Rd (behind Hornsby McDonalds & directly opposite the High School)  
Speakers will include:

·  Fiona Davies, CEO The Australian Medical Association

·  Michele Goldman, CEO The Asthma Foundation of NSW

·  Professor Stephen Leeder, Professor emeritus in public health and community medicine, Menzies Centre for Health Policy, University of Sydney.

·  Dr Richard Chard, Head of cardio-thoracic Surgery and an Associate Professor at UNSW.

Experts will present a vast body of medical research showing increased heart disease, cancer, stroke, breathing problems and reduced lung growth in children. They will address the claims by NorthConnex that the 9km of pollution will simply be “blown away” by the stacks using meteorological information and data for both the northern and southern ends of the tunnel.

For your information, the South end frequently has little to no discernible breeze during the morning peak hour period. The plume of pollution will undoubtedly fall on houses within the 1km circle shown in the EIS. On 24th August 2014 there was no wind around the proposed location of the southern portal until9am and what wind there was came from the West. Wind speed of less than 2m/sec (ie about 8km/hour) is not considered sufficient to disperse pollution from the stack. Only a very few gusts on 24th August 2014 were in excess of 8kph.

There is no doubt as to the health consequences of particulate matter. There is no doubt as to the concentrations which will be reached in the tunnel during busy periods. There is no doubt there are sustained periods of still air around the tunnel exits during peak hour periods . . . and it is proven, both medically and scientifically, that diesel emissions are carcinogenic. Are you willing to do nothing and to be exposed to cancer causing emissions when there ARE alternatives available?

Training in effective non-violent protesting

Come along for a whole day of interactive panels and workshops to help you develop your campaign and skills.
When: 30 August, 11AM - 5PM.
Where: Hawkesbury Central Library, George St, Windsor
Workshops include: Non violent direct action, how to use the GIPA (FOI), social media strategies, lessons from the frontline of a campaign
Suggested contribution: $20 waged, $10 unwaged to cover the cost of lunch & afternoon tea
RSVP: Chandi.Bates@parliament.nsw.gov.au

Thursday, August 14, 2014

Submission on 10/50 Clearing Code of Practice

On 1 August 2014, NSW Government passed legislation that allows landowners to clear all trees on their property within 10 m and vegetation within 50m of a house or habitable building if it is in a bushfire prone area. The definition and extent of bushfire prone properties is so wide that it includes most of Beecroft and Cheltenham including properties which have no likelihood of ever being affected by bushfires. It will impact on 85% of Hornsby Shire, 90% of Beecroft.  It will allow widespread clearing of trees and vegetation while doing little to reduce the actual risk from bushfire.

All who value our trees and greenery are asked to protest to the authorities about this, perhaps using the following submission:
I am opposed to this legislation because:
·         It allows widespread clearing of trees and vegetation in large suburban areas which in reality are extremely unlikely to be affected by bushfire risk. This could result in developers and land owners clearing trees and vegetation simply to allow subdivision and development which bears no relevance to bushfire prevention.

·         Trees are an integral part of our environment and heritage. They offer shade, improve our streetscape, scenery and living amenity. They reduce heat radiation and carbon dioxide so important in combatting climate change. They are so important for wildlife habitats and wildlife corridors.

·         The hard fought protection offered by Council’s Tree Protection Order (TPO) and the Beecroft Cheltenham Conservation area will be lost.

·         Our suburbs have critically endangered Blue Gum High Forest and Sydney Turpentine Ironbark Forest which will be threatened. No distinction is made for threatened or endangered species.

·         Biodiversity will be reduced. Soil erosion will increase and water quality reduced.

·         It fails to consider measures already in in place to ensure fire mitigation in houses and buildings adjoining bushland and bushfire prevention measures such as controlled burning, community fire pumps and training.

·         It applies statewide so all suburbs and regions with bushland will be able to undertake clearing.

For these reasons, I ask that an immediate halt be placed on this legislation so that its impacts and effectiveness can be assessed. Realistic boundaries for bushfire prone areas need to be drawn. Special consideration should be given to suburbs and regions where trees are an integral part of their character, environment and heritage.

Other comments: ________________________________________________________________________



Address ________________________________________________________________________________

Stuart Ayres, Minister for Emergency Services: office@ayres.minister.nsw.gov.au

Greg Smith MP,SC: epping@parliament.nsw.gov.au

Steve Russell, Mayor Hornsby Shire Council: srussell@hornsby.nsw.gov.au

Michael Hutchence, C ward Councillor: mhutchence@hornsby.nsw.gov.au

Castle Hill Showground

Another park area being taken over by developers!  This came in from the Hills Distict Kennel & Training Club:
I am writing to inform you about the predicament that Hills District Kennel & Training Club Inc find ourselves in.
The Hills Shire Council are looking at redeveloping Castle Hill Showground.
They are planning Sky Rise Buildings, Cafes, Real Estate, a Stadium and a Shopping Centre.
We need your help!
Could you please pass on the below link to all your Club Members asking them to sign our Online Petition.
This will be handed onto our Local Mayor, the General Manager of Castle Hill Showground and our Local Member.
Your help in this matter is greatly appreciated.

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Open Meeting on the future of our suburbs

Beecroft Cheltenham Civic Trust is holding a public meeting to allow residents to discuss the future of Beecroft and Cheltenham.

Date: Thursday 9 October 2014

Time: 7.30pm

Venue: Beecroft Presbyterian Church Hall, Welham St Beecroft. Parking is available on site or in Welham St or Mary St.

We hope you will be able to attend.

RSVP carowatt@ozemail.com.au

New 10/50 Law - come and hear about it

If you haven't yet heard of the latest NSW Government threat to the beauty of our suburb, you soon will, and hopefully you will be as angry as we are! 
David Shoebridge who is the Greens' spokesperson on this legislation will be at Cheltenham station at 8am tomorrow morning 15 August, at the invitation of Michael Bianchino. It's important that we hear as a community what can be done to change the 10/50 Code. Please be there if you can.
We will post full details of the horrendous law, and of the BCCT Submission against it, very soon.