Vicki Low, MEIANZ, CEnvP, President – SEQ Division
Over 70 environmental practitioners gathered in Brisbane to take part in the first full day forum of 2014 for SEQ Division on 1 May.
The day kicked off early with Dr David Dique, from sponsors ERM, giving a key note speech on the history of nature conservation in Queensland and how the legislation is changing.
Before lunch, we had enjoyed presentations on the Mary River Turtle (Dr Natalie Clark, GHD), the snub-nosed dolphin (Nikki O‘Donnell, AMEC) and stygofauna (Dr Ben Cook, frc environmental). Attendees were also treated to a ground breaking presentation by John Young, who in 2013, rediscovered the night parrot, which was presumed extinct. When John played the video of the night parrot scurrying around the Spinifex, a pin dropping would have been heard in the room.
Rather than a standard panel discussion, convener Dave Francis (Cardno) arranged a debate to finish the day on whether the time has now come to triage our threatened species.
We were joined by Senator Larissa Waters, Michael Boyle, Paul Donatiu and Geoff Lundie-Jenkins for this engaging discussion, which was triumphed by the opposing team – Senator Waters and Paul Donatiu. Rather than presenting gifts to our speakers, attendees were invited to vote for a species that they would like to donate to. As a result, $200 was donated to the conservation of eastern barred bandicoot, bush-tail rock wallaby and eastern quoll via www.fame.org.au.