Tuggerah Lakes Restoration Project needs to be carefully thought out

The idea of setting up a 2020 Tuggerah Lakes Restoration Project (Wyong Regional Chronicle edition 158) seems to be, make a lot of complaints and wait for the State Government to offer funding, rather than to do anything that is within the Council’s compass.
Of course, as, Greg Best, puts it, “There’s (sic) a thousand ideas to restore the lakes”, which is one of the serious problems with this latest foray.
Half of those ideas are in conflict with the other half, and the first thing that is needed is an overall strategy to collect the workable ideas, combine them into an integrated plan, select action projects that have the highest priority and, only then, search out funding, based on a rational approach, instead of the usual local-government “whingeing” tactic.
It is a bit rich that Council is now complaining that “our lake system continues to struggle under the weight of urbanisation”, when the agency directly responsible for any of the problems of urbanization is the local-government authority, formerly Gosford/Wyong, now Central Coast.
It is also a little concerning that Council has deployed $26m on projects related to the 2008 Tuggerah Lakes Estuary Management Plan, but that the lakes situation appears to be worse than it was then.
It is not clear whether this means that the Plan was wrong, the projects were badly chosen, the work done was inadequate, or the funding came nowhere near the needs of the Plan.
Whatever emerges from this Council initiative, if anything, let us be sure that the project establishes achievable goals and maps out a credible path to reaching them.

Email, Feb 24
Bruce Hyland, Woy Woy

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