The Gold Coast transformed: from wilderness to urban ecosystem.

The Gold Coast transformed: from wilderness to urban ecosystem. Tor Hundloe, Bridgette McDougall, Craig Page.
The Gold Coast transformed: from wilderness to urban ecosystem.

Clayton South: CSIRO Publishing, 2015. Octavo, paperback, photographs, maps.

One of Australia’s premier tourism destinations, the Gold Coast is a city cut out of coastal vegetation, including paperbark swamps, mangroves and rainforests of worldwide significance. The Gold Coast Transformed is a collection of integrated chapters identifying and assessing the environmental impacts of the building of Australia’s sixth largest city. It traces the cumulative impacts from the day the first timber-getter entered what is now World Heritage-listed rainforest through to the present.

The city’s natural and engineered environments are both fascinating and vulnerable. The construction of massive highrise apartment blocks, on what were frontal beach dunes, is one of the fundamental mistakes not to be repeated. The book illustrates how and why major environmentally destructive development took place and discusses the impacts of such development on the Gold Coast’s beaches, wildlife, and terrestrial and marine environments, such as the destruction of riparian mangrove forest. The book also shows the possibility of sustaining natural populations and reducing the city’s ecological footprint.

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