FRAGYLE was inaugurated in 2006 after two large developers presented to the people of Preston Beach their plans for 7,500 houses and a thriving city center north and south of the fishing hamlet of Preston Beach.
Horrified at the thought of what such a development would do to the Yalgorup Lakes and wetlands a group of residents met in a local house in June 2006 and FRAGYLE, Friends of Ramsar Action Group for the Yalgorup Lakes Environment, was born.
The Aims of FRAGYLE
- To protect and sustain the integrity of the Yalgorup Park, its Lake System and Environment
- To ensure the values of the Ramsar Convention and the WA Wetlands Conservation Policy are upheld
- To protect the underground water system from overuse and degradation.
- To raise public awareness of the threats to the Yalgorup National Park, its unique Lake system, flora, fauna, the tuart forest and the living thrombolites.
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Fragyle received three awards in 2017 acknowledging our ongoing contribution to protecting the environment and educating people about these important matters.
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The Need to Share our Concerns
In January 2008 FRAGYLE held an Information Forum covering all the aspects of the lakes from their inception, Hydrology, chemistry, Ramsar status, visiting birds and geoheritage qualities to which they invited all the Government Departments, EPA, WAPC and the Councillors of Mandurah, Waroona and Harvey. Eight leading speakers addressed a packed Community Hall.
The Environment Protection Authority, now aware that they were going to have to carry out a major environmental assessment of the area when all the plans from developers were brought before them, decided to be proactive and prepare an Assessment of the area ready for the proposals when they arrived on their desk. FRAGYLE responded in depth when submissions were called for.
On the 12th March 2009 the members of the EPA Board and all the staff flew over the Lakes and drove back by car to give both an aerial and ground perspective of the area. They had lunch with FRAGYLE at the Preston Beach Community Hall. While they ate, Hilary Wheater, Chairman of FRAGYLE gave a presentation on the Yalgorup Lake System. Dr Vic Semenuik of the Wetlands Research Institute followed this up with an in-depth presentation on the hydrology and heritage values of the Lakes. The Members of the EPA were then taken to a vantage point at Preston Beach to view the Lake System.
In May 2010 the EPA released their Strategic Environmental Advice on the Dawesville to Binningup Area supporting the views of FRAGYLE that the area has “important international, national and regional environmental values” which must be conserved.
In 2008 FRAGYLE requested that the WAPC declare the whole of the Yalgorup Lake System a National Park and to be allowed to give a presentation to the WAPC to support this request.
This was accepted and both the Chairman of FRAGYLE and representatives from the developers were invited to present their cases to the Coastal Planning Committee of the WAPC in Mandurah.
FRAGYLE presented their case for total preservation of the area in perpetuity with absolutely no commercial development. The developers presented their case for 7,500 houses, schools, a thriving shopping center and a police presence.
The WAPC decided that only 1,600 dwellings would be allowed on and around Preston Beach including those already in place. Any variation on that would be dependent on the outcome of the Strategic Advice from the EPA which was pending.
Peel/Yalgorup Region Improvement Fund
On 13 Jan 2009, FRAGYLE wrote to Minister John Day and John Dawkins, Chairman of WAPC requesting a Peel/Yalgorup Region Improvement Fund be set up to enable the purchase of conservation lands in the area.
A Peel/Yalgorup Improvement Fund will come into action in July 2015.
FRAGYLE has written to Minister John Day requesting that the lands around the Yalgorup Lake System should have priority amongst future purchases.
Purchase of lands to the West of Lake Clifton
FRAGYLE approached Dr Kim Hames, member for Dawesville and requested him to approach the Government to take advantage of the Cape Bouvard lands for sale to the west of Lake Clifton and to purchase them for amalgamation into the Yalgorup Park.
The Government approached the vendors to negotiate a sale but the two parties were not able to reach an agreement on the price.
A Corporate Approach
During the latter part of 2014 FRAGYLE approached eight companies with a request for assistance to buy the lands around Lake Clifton and to construct an Ecological, Educational and Recreational Park in Yalgorup Lakes.
FRAGYLE has not been successful at this time.