Labor pledge to make Fisherman's Bay land previously slated for residential development part of Tomaree National Park

Land in Fisherman's Bay that Port residents fought to save from development in 2015 would be included in the Tomaree National Park if a Labor government won the state election.

This was the pledge NSW Opposition leader Michael Daley and deputy leader Penny Sharpe made during a visit to Salamander Bay on Thursday morning.

The pair, joined by Port Stephens MP Kate Washington and Adam Searle MLC, the shadow minister for energy and climate change, also outlined Labor's climate change plan and announced a raft of policies to protect NSW's environment.

The Fisherman's Bay announcement drew applause from about 30 supporters plus members of the Mambo-Wanda Wetlands Conservation Group gathered in Salamander Bay for the announcement.

UrbanGrowth, formerly Landcom, withdrew its application for a 104-lot housing estate in Fisherman's Bay following a campaign from residents, led by the South Tomaree Community Association, who threatened to take the matter to the Land and Environment Court.

At the time, the association said the development, which was planned to sprawl across 23 hectares of bushland, disregarded the presence of threatened species, including koalas and the squirrel glider.

Speaking to the gathered crowd in Salamander Bay on Thursday morning, Ms Washington recalled the day she took Ms Sharpe on a walk through the Fisherman's Bay site and saw a koala.

The Port Stephens visit by the Opposition leader alongside Ms Sharpe and Mr Searle coincided with the party’s policy on climate change and setting a renewable energy target for NSW.

They chose the Mambo Wetlands site to highlight the Liberal government’s decision to sell off a section of the koala habitat to a private developer in 2016 against the wishes of the community and Ms Washington.

“A Labor government will require NSW to generate at least 50 per cent of it power from renewable sources by 2030 and close to 100 per cent by 2050,” Mr Daley said.

“We also plan to hold a climate change summit in our first year of office.” He said there was no appetite for investment in coal fire energy and a Daley government would invest billions of dollars in cleaner, greener power.

Ms Sharpe said that climate change was real and her government would put the environment front and centre in future plans.

“We need to look after our natural environment, the trees and animals, water, soil and air. These are precious commodities vital to our future.”

“We will protect and support our national parks, including expanding Tomaree National Park at Fisherman's Bay to save a large block of land from future development.”

Ms Washington said there was no change in Labor’s commitment to buy back Mambo Wetlands and to build a high school at Medowie.


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