Victoria’s Twelve Apostles Site Afflicted By Waste Discharge Problems!

A genuine natural  landmark...

A genuine natural landmark…

Victoria’s iconic Twelve Apostles attracts massive tourist crowds, offering guests the chance to see some of the most unique and celebrated natural formations in the world. But recent criticisms of the site have centred on one critical problem: too much wastewater was being discharged into the waters surrounding the rocky attractions.

Recently, a sewage leak caught the attention of the Environmental Protection Authority (EPA). According to local authorities, the leak was due in part to excess strain being placed on the parkland’s existing public toilets. With around 25 restrooms in the area, droves of visitors have become accustomed to a long wait and smelly restrooms, but the resulting leak was truly unexpected.

Corangamite Mayor Chris O’Connor told the ABC that the problem was serious and potentially game-changing. “We’re not even in peak time and certainly last year, with the speed of numbers, we were just at absolute full capacity,” he explained. “They’ve got portables in there. The place often smells pretty badly when you get out of your car, and just the capacity is not coping.”

Locals are also concerned about the ‘flow-on’ effects of the toilet shortage. “The likes of Port Campbell wouldn’t have the capacity to cope. We would be in real trouble,” Mayor O’Connor added. “Who knows what would happen but it would be highly embarrassing and it’d be obviously a major shock to our local economy.”

“People come in their thousands; they come in buses, they come in cars. If you don’t have facilities, I suppose you can only imagine what would happen around the site,” he explained. “Humans have got needs, and I guess when you’ve gotta go, you’ve gotta go.”

But some have advocated for a visitor’s fee to be imposed on the site. The added revenue could help more adequately manage the area. Great Ocean Road Regional Tourism Board spokesperson Wayne Kayler-Thomson said a $10 fee could address the imbalance. “If you go to other natural attractions around the world, you’ll find it’s common practice to pay a fee to access those facilities and that helps to maintain the facility,” he told the ABC. “So we need to investigate ways and opportunities of doing that as part of the long term sustainability of the site.”

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