Train Stabling/birds sample email to Sonya Kilkenny, Daniel Andrews, Jacinta Allan and LXRA

April 8, 2018 Moira Harbour No comments exist

Dear Member

I write to you regarding the Proposed Train Stabling Facility in Seaford. This facility is 870 metres  to the Seaford Edithvale Wetlands which is listed in the Ramsar Convention. Birds migrate every year to these wetlands, to reproduce. It is well documented that these birds are drawn to Light Ships and Stadiums, as they migrate at night. They are drawn to the light, become confused, call out in distress and use up vital energy stores. Energy stores that should be taking them to the wetlands. This facility will be lit all night, all 75,000 metres .  As you may or may not know there are threatened and critically endangered birds that fly to the wetlands which are protected by the China  Australia Migratory agreement (CAMBA) Japan Australia Migratory Bird Agreement (JAMBA) and the Korea Australia Migratory Bird Agreement (ROKAMBA.) Please find below studies about migratory bird paths and the affect light has on them and the migratory birds that fly to our wetlands.

For the migratory bird population
• Artificial noise hinders bird’s reproduction
• Birds rely on their hearing to avoid danger
• Noise pollution caused by human activity interferes with birds’ hearing ability
• Artificial noise masks calls from other birds, a signal that predators may be present
• This chronically stresses mother birds and nestlings
• Birds nesting near noisy environments lay fewer eggs that hatch
• Tense adults spend more time guarding their nests and less feeding their chicks, which affects the young
• Chicks in loud areas have reduced growth and body size
• Birds exposed to constant noise pollution suffer from chronic stress
• Such birds have highly reduced levels of the stress hormone called Corticosterone
• Low levels of the stress hormone occur as a reaction to intense stress as the body tones down levels of the hormone to protect itself. The condition is similar to humans suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)

Then there is the impact on Human Health. Artificial Light at Night(ALAN) may cause negative health effect such as breast cancer, circadian phase disruption (body clock) and sleep disorders.ALAN suppresses melatonin secretion, increases sleep latency and increases alertness.

For the human population noise is pervasive in everyday life and can cause both auditory and non-auditory health effects. Our understanding of molecular mechanisms involved in noise-induced hair-cell and nerve damage has substantially increased.Evidence of the non-auditory effects of environmental noise exposure on public health is growing. Observational and experimental studies have shown that noise exposure leads to annoyance, disturbs sleep and causes daytime sleepiness, affects patient outcomes and staff performance in hospitals, increases the occurrence of hypertension and cardiovascular disease, and impairs cognitive performance in schoolchildren.

An EES has not been done, therefore no assessment under the Environmental Protection and Biodiversity Conservation (EPBC) act has been generated. I ask you  to call for an Environment Effects Study (EES )and request the the federal government to do an assessment under the EPBC act. These internationally listed birds must be protected. We must honour our agreements with Japan,China and Korea and take a cautionary approach with appropriate measures to preserve and enhance the environment of migratory birds. In particular, we should seek means to prevent damage to migratory birds and their environment.

There is a viable alternative of an empty parcel of land in Baxter, not close to wetlands, residents or any businesses. It is shameful the cost to the Seaford Community and the environment. To remove 7 businesses from our suburb including Page Bros & Seaford Panels, at a cost of 200 direct & indirect local jobs $187 million = Approx $1 million per job (plus acquisition costs.)

$36 million per in anticipated lost income per annum out of our suburb. There will be stabling capable of storing up to 24 trains, to be housed nightly in our suburb (replacing 6 from Carrum.) There will be all night lighting, 22 hour noise of shunting trains for cleaning, maintenance and parking, among our residential properties. I reiterate the impacts on rare bird life into & out of the protected Seaford Wetlands to be devastating.

Kind regards

Please find below supporting studies about migratory bird paths and the affect light has on them and the migratory birds that fly to our wetlands.

“Birds have to use things to orient. One of the tools in their kit is celestial cues, so they can use the star maps like early navigators,” Susan Elbin, director of conservation and science at NYC Audubon, says. Believing they’re flying toward starlight or something similar, nocturnal migrants are drawn to the dazzling display, where they end up wasting crucial energy flying around and sounding off in distress.

Matt Watson, David Wilson, and Daniel Mennill of the University of Windsor recorded the flight calls of migrating birds passing overhead during the 2013 fall migration in southern Ontario, Canada, comparing sites with and without ground-level artificial lights. Analyzing 352 hours of recordings, including the calls of at least 15 bird species, they found that significantly more flight calls were recorded at lit sites than at dark sites. “By pointing microphones at the night sky, we can survey migratory birds based on the quiet sounds they produce in flight,” says Mennill. “This simple technique offers a special opportunity because we can resolve particular species of birds, or groups of species, using a fairly simple technology.”

“It was exciting to find that even low-level anthropogenic lights affect call detections from migrating birds,” adds Watson. Their findings have several possible explanations—ground-level lights could be disorienting birds, causing them to call more often and decrease their altitude as they attempt to straighten themselves out, or they could actually be attracting additional birds, as has already been documented with higher-elevation lights. In either case, artificial lights are causing migrating birds to waste energy, which could affect their chances of surviving their journey.

“Anthropogenic light has profound effects on wild animals. For migratory birds, we know that lights on top of skyscrapers, communication towers, and lighthouses disorient and attract birds,” says Mennill. “Our study reveals for the first time that even low-intensity lights on the ground influence the behavior of migratory birds overhead.”

Excessive or misdirected artificial light at night (ALAN) produces light pollution that influences several aspects of the biology and ecology of birds, including disruption of circadian rhythms and disorientation during flight. Many migrating birds traverse large expanses of land twice every year at night when ALAN illuminates the sky.

Here is a list of birds under the Jamba, Camba and Rokamba agreements that could be affected;

JAMBA

• Cattle Egret

• Rednecked Stint

• Sharp tailed Sandpiper

• Curlew Sandpiper

• Black tailed godwit

• Red necked Phalarope

• White winged black tern

CAMBA

• Cattle Egret

• Great Egret

• White bellied Sea Eagle

• Black Tail Godwit

• Wood Sandpiper

• Latham’s Snipe

• Red Knot

• Red necked Stint

• Sharp tailed Sandpiper

• Curlew Sandpiper

• Red necked Phalarope

• White winged Tern

• Caspian Tern

• Common Tern

ROKAMBA

• Latham’s snipe

• Black Tailed Godwit

• Common Greenshank

• Wood Sandpiper

• Red Knot

• Red necked Stint

• Pectoral Sandpiper

• Sharp tailed Sandpiper

• Curlew Sandpiper

• Red necked Phalarope

• Common tern

• White winged black Tern

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