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LETTER OF CONCERN ASSOCIATED WITH THE ESTABLISHMENT OF A NUCLEAR POWER STATION AT BANTAMSKLIP – DYER ISLAND CONSERVATION TRUST
Excerpt: (full document 67 pages available here)
Document written by: Katja Vinding Petersen, Michelle Wcisel, Brenda Walters, Oliver Jewell, Alison Towner, in cooperation with the Trustees from Dyer Island Conservation Trust.
1 EXECUTIVE SUMMARY
This document outlines the concerns of The Dyer Island Conservation Trust (DICT) with regards to the proposed establishment of a nuclear power station (NPS) at Bantamsklip. It also provides an overview of the research which the DICT deems necessary to be carried out prior to the establishment of an NPS as well as suggested monitoring programs during construction and operational phases.
Insufficient Baseline Data
DICT finds the current baseline data concerning this area and the ecosystem insufficient. In order to protect this area’s unique marine biodiversity, DICT calls for further research prior to the establishment of a NPS. Should the NPS project at Bantamsklip proceed, DICT would like to see more monitoring programs during the construction and operations phases.
Current Lack of Knowledge
The DICT is highly concerned that rare and endangered marine species will experience devastating impacts in relation to the NPS. Since there have been no studies carried out prior to the NPS concerning the marine animals i.e. sharks, fur seals, cetaceans, birds and fish species in the area, it is unknown to which degree the proposed site is of significance to these animals. Also, due of this lack of knowledge, DICT find the conclusions made in the EIA and in the Marine- and the Oceanographic Specialist studies highly questionable.
Consequential Damage to Ecosystem
It is not difficult to find examples from the past where developments have unintentionally destroyed factions of an ecosystem when information about that system was unknown until the damage was done. Any visitor to the Cape Agulhas region can describe a bio-diverse habitat that is as incredible as it is delicate.
That is why the DICT is calling for more research to be conducted in this region before further development occurs. Enabling us to better understand the intricate cycle of life in this region and further assess how future development may impact the area.
DICT calls for a document outlining actual research projects which will be carried out prior to and during the construction phase as well as during the operational phase. This document should also state the aim, the methods, duration of the projects, the expected results and how it is linked to other projects carried out in conjunction with the NPS. Eskom’s degree of commitment to the different research projects should also be stated.
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