MEDIA RELEASE: The Conservation Council has welcomed a motion which passed the ACT Legislative Assembly yesterday and called on the ACT Government to put aside the Coombs Peninsula for environmental and recreational purposes, and remove it from the land release program by June next year.

“The Conservation Council has long held the view that the Coombs Penisula, a small spit of land that extends north into the Molonglo river corridor, should be put aside for environmental purposes due to the impact that urban development and the management of fire risk would have on the habitat of the endangered Pink-tailed Worm-lizard,” said Helen Oakey, Executive Director.

“Yesterday’s Assembly motion calls for the area to be removed from the land release program by June 2020.

“As more people live in higher density suburbs, access to high-quality urban open space becomes more important, and the Coombs Peninsula has values that should be able to be enjoyed the whole community, not just a select few.

“In its formal response to the Planning Committee’s report on the Molonglo River Corridor tabled on Tuesday, the ACT Government had confirmed that it wanted to power ahead with plans to squeeze another 30 residences onto the Coombs Peninsula in spite of the Committee’s recommendations that the area be put aside for environmental and recreational purposes.

“The Government has been ignoring the case that has been made that designating the area as urban open space would support protection of the environmental values in the river corridor, allow better management of fire risk, and provide a wonderful urban open space area for residents in Molonglo.

“Now that the Assembly has made such a clear recommendation to remove the Coombs Penisula from the land release program by June 2020, the Conservation Council is keen to see the ACT Government respond to the community’s concerns,” said Ms Oakey.