New threat to development of North Lismore Plateau
BUNDJALUNG Aboriginal elder Mickey Ryan will start "urgent legal proceedings as soon as practical" to have the North Lismore Plateau rezoning decision set aside.
Lismore City Council last month announced development of the plateau would go ahead after the Department of Planning and Environment signed off on the rezoning of the area.
The site, covering 255 hectares, could carry 1300 residential lots.
Mr Ryan said the rezoning did not consider that a whole series of significant sites, surveyed throughout 2014 and 2015, would be destroyed by the development.
"North Lismore Plateau is the most significant site in the Lismore area, including burials, ceremonial places, carved trees, water holes and rare artefacts all of which will be impacted or totally destroyed by the proposed development," he said.
"We custodians and traditional owners are committed to do all in our power to never allow this development in any form to proceed."
Mr Ryan also said the development will destroy habitats of extremely rare flora and fauna species including the thorny pea and other rainforest remnants.
The council is spending $24 million to develop the plateau's preliminary infrastructure works like the water main service and gravity sewer. The site could be ready for development by the end of June.
"If need be I will go to the highest courts in the country and if that is not enough I will physically stop the bulldozers with my own body," Mr Ryan said.