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    Deputy Premier, Minister for State Development, Infrastructure and Planning
    The Honourable Jeff Seeney

    Upgrades to Port of Cairns cruising along

    Deputy Premier, Minister for State Development, Infrastructure and Planning
    The Honourable Jeff Seeney

    Thursday, December 06, 2012

    Upgrades to Port of Cairns cruising along

    The Queensland Coordinator-General’s assessment of the proposed upgrade of the Port of Cairns has reached another major milestone after terms of reference for an environmental impact statement (EIS) were finalised this week.

    Deputy Premier and Minister for State Development, Infrastructure and Planning Jeff Seeney said Ports North’s proposed Cairns Shipping Development Project, if ultimately approved, would improve shipping access to Trinity Inlet and provide a major economic and tourism boost to the region.

    “Tourism is one of the four pillars of the economy and, if approved, this upgrade will deliver a real boost for the region’s tourism,” Mr Seeney said.

    “I cannot emphasise enough the important role these upgrades could play in the long-term viability for Cairns and the surrounding region’s tourism industry.”

    Mr Seeney said the project also proposed to widen and deepen the existing shipping channels and swing basins to accommodate mega class cruise shipping vessels. 

    The proponent is also looking to widen and deepen the existing outer shipping channel and cruise shipping swing basin and expand the existing Dredge Material Placement Area.

    When the EIS is released next year members of the community will again have the chance to have their say and provide submissions to the Coordinator-General.

    The project is expected to require a workforce of 215 people during its one year construction period.

    Mr Seeney said the project was being assessed in parallel with the Commonwealth Government’s assessment under the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999 (EPBC Act).

    “As the project involves dredging and spoil disposal the co-operation and timely responses from relevant Commonwealth agencies will be very important to complement our own streamlined approval approaches,” he said.

    “A total of 22 submissions were received on the draft ToR and there were a number of issues raised which must be addressed by the proponent in its EIS.”

    [ENDS] 6 December 2012

    Media Contact:
      Kate Haddan – 0418 373 516