PROTESTORS will show their objection to the site of a proposed whale interpretive centre on North Stradbroke Island on Saturday.
The group are against the Point Lookout headland location of the centre, a joint project of the Quandamooka Yoolooburrabee Aboriginal Corporate and the state government.
A group spokesperson said the proposed site on the island known as Minjerribah had cultural, spiritual and environmental significance and was fringed by a RAMSAR site of national and global significance.
The spokesperson said Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal people had called for the protest to ensure the centre was not built on the site, which they regarded as sacred.
“The protest is not against the interpretive centre, but the proposed location,” the spokesperson said.
“Many local community members believe that there has been no community consultation before the announcement of the interpretive centre and proposed site and no alternative site locations have been explored.
“The community are now voicing their concerns in various forms.”
Their objection was the subject of an online petition that received 17,500 signatures last year.
Treasurer Jackie Trad announced $1.55 million of funding for the centre in June.
This was in addition to $250,000 provided previously for feasibility, detailed design approvals and tendering for the centre.
The facility is part of the North Stradbroke Island economic transition strategy to stimulate business development and growth and expand the tourism industry as sand mining is phased out on the island.
The protest comes weeks after QYAC held an engagement session on the Yalingbila Bibula (whale on the hill) project.
Another is to be held on January 23.
QYAC chief executive officer Cameron Costello said the launch of the engagement process was another step in engaging the community to develop Yalingbila Bibula.
“We believe Quandamooka Country, and in particular Mooloomba (Point Lookout), can be a global whale conservation, education, research destination that will be shared and enjoyed by residents, visitors, researchers and the education sector including both school children and international students,” Mr Costello said.
“The main attraction will be the 15-metre adult humpback whale skeleton which came ashore on Minjerribah.”
“The structure is planned on the site of the former tennis courts at Mooloomba and will complement the world’s longest study into humpback whales being conducted by the University of Queensland.
“It will also provide a stunning vantage point allowing people to view the yalingbila from land as they migrate past our iconic shores.”
The protestors will meet near Frenchman’s Beach at 9.30am before marching to the site.
The group spokesperson said many community members believed the economic transition strategy planning and consultation process had not been transparent or inclusive.
For information on the protest, visit The Peaceful Protest Picnic event on Facebook.
For information on the facility, visit yalingbilabibula.com.au.