When I was about 8 years old me and my ratbag neighbours across the road used to go sand boarding at Kurnell. You get an old VB box, run to the top of the hill and slide down, either head first or on your butt. It was more fun head first but you’d get sand in the face.
The ratbag neighbours’ dad said not to go in the water.

Kurnell has the worst possible smell of any suburb, and we used to pay out the kids that lived in that suburb. But they had a weird pride about it.
Reasons why we paid them out:
– There’s an oil refinery
– Planes fly directly overhead to land at Botany
– Captain Cook’s landing monument is there
– There’s a horse-riding range that smells
– Botany Bay is stagnant so it smells more ‘rotty’

In uni I watched ‘80,000 Barrels’ by Paul Brown. It’s a doco about toxic barrels stored at Botany. I later found out that there were some barrels stored in the water at the bottom of the sand hills. They will soon leach into the bay.

There is now also a desal plant at Kurnell. There were huge protests against the plant but it snuck in somehow. Desalination is a really energy intensive process. Sydney currently has enough water but part of the contract is that the plant needs to operate, and the concentrated seawater gets pumped back into the bay, which is bad for coral and fishies. I think that’s what Squid said.


dusty shell smell, oil (industrial), burnt oil (industrial), kerosene from planes, stagnant salty bay, European pines, subtle eucalypt.


Tessa Rex