Mar 8, 2019

Media Release – Labor commits to shore power at White Bay – Friday, 8 March 2019

Federal and State Labor Governments would partner to install shore power for cruise ships at the White Bay Cruise Terminal to eliminate fume emissions and reduce noise for residents of Balmain and Rozelle.

The $36 million cost would be shared 50-50, but would be recovered from cruise ship operators over time.

The White Bay Cruise Ship Terminal opened in 2013 to replace cruise ship facilities at Darling Harbour closed as part of the Barangaroo redevelopment.

Since then, residents of Balmain and Rozelle have expressed reasonable concerns about fumes, odours and noise caused by vessels running their engines to generate power.

In 2016, new Federal regulations requiring the use of low-sulphur fuel were introduced, but this has not eliminated the problem for the 4,000 residents who live in the vicinity.

While the NSW Berejiklian Government ruled out shore power in 2017, Labor would eliminate this nuisance once and for all by allowing vessels to connect to the Sydney power grid.

Federal Shadow Minister for Infrastructure and Transport Anthony Albanese said residents had suffered for long enough.

“Shore power would improve amenity for residents, while also allowing the terminal to continue operating and providing much needed jobs in the tourism sector,’’ Mr Albanese said.

“When an electoral redistribution added Balmain to my electorate in 2016, I promised residents I would fight for shore power at White Bay. I’m pleased to say Labor would deliver on that promise.’’

NSW Labor Leader Michael Daley said: “Of course we want the terminal to keep operating, but in contrast to the Liberals and Nationals we will make sure the quality of life of the community in Balmain and Rozelle is looked after as well.

“The people of Rozelle and Balmain just want fairness and respect here. I’ve listened to them, which is why a Daley Labor Government will work with a Shorten Labor Government will deliver on shore power for cruise ships at White Bay.”

State Labor Candidate for Balmain Elly Howse said the commitment represented a victory for residents after five years of inaction by Greens MP Jamie Parker.

“While the Port Authority has been working with the community on noise mitigation, this will not reduce fumes and odours,’’ Ms Howse said.

“Allowing ships to connect to the power supply is the answer and only Labor will deliver this.’’