OPINION: Misconceptions on the Myall

DEAR News Of The Area,

AFTER 65 years on the Myall, I am flummoxed by the irrational reasoning on both sides of the dredging debate.

It all started in 2008 when the river was in a filthy condition.

The popular misconception was that the extreme turbidity was caused by the partial channel blockage.

Even now, water clarity is erroneously equated to salinity, whereas it is a matter of turbidity.

What caused the extreme turbidity in 2008?

The almost-complete destruction of the seagrass (Zostera capricorni).

Seagrass filters all the suspended mud content, redirecting it to the sand, leaving the water clear.

Seagrasses are the basis of all fish life.

This loss was not an annual cyclical “die back”, it is permanent.

It has been poisoned.

During flooding events, the water (before 2008) turned a dark purple shade; now it turns brown,

The Scanes report (2010) noted on p38 “these changes are not included because they occurred after the data was recorded”.

Now you know.

Hawks Nest.

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