What is it that we value most? Those among us who have a closeness to and affinity with the natural environment certainly value a NATURE REFUGE over an OPEN CUT COAL MINE. How will our new Queensland government decide? We in Queensland will not benefit from the coal mine - not even jobs are certain as large mining companies seek to reduce human employees and replace them with automation. Coal is responsible for loads of climate damaging carbon pollution - whether it is burnt here or in CHINA. The impact of mining in Galilee Basin was prepared by the INSTITUTE FOR SUSTAINABLE FUTURES. It can be read or downloaded here.
As if the climate pollution is not enough the potential for futher harm to our WORLD HERITAGE Great Barrier Reef with expanded ports is unavoidable with our current development processes. A report about the Industrialisation of the Great Barrier Reef is available here
The proposed new mines would destroy two invaluable areas of our natural heritage. Bimblebox and Great Barrier Reef. Why would any Australian contemplate allowing that to happen? Is the economic imperative so great that we will sacrifice and cause to go extinct the small group of black-throated finches listed as endangered both in Queensland and nationally. Click on image to go to the National Recovery Plan.
It would seem that although we might believe that a REFUGE which shelters or protects from danger or calamity; a sanctuary inaccessible to an enemy is only so at the discretion of our environmental ministers.
New Premier Campbell Newman has stated he would keep his promises. This will be a test case. The LNP have already committed, in a statement to Lock the Gate, that they will protect areas with high conservation values from mining - does that include Bimblebox, and other nature refuges?
A refuge is either a refuge or it is not. It's simple. Unless people bombard the minister at Tony.Burke.MP@ environment.gov.au and the new state Environment Minister, saying "Don't Even Think About it'', then in the case of Finch versus Noisy Miner, the bird is cooked.
The offer to buy adjacent land to offset may be nice in theory but in practical terms does not work. There have been 1800 submissions to Queensland Co-ordinator-General. Federal Environment Minister Tony Burke has the power to intervene and veto the mine.
The Australia Institute reveals Queensland's mining boom will destroy 20,000 non-mining jobs. One non-mining job lost for every two mining jobs created, says senior economist Matt Grudnoff. Mostly in manufacturing and international tourism.
As concerned citizens we nned to be making our values known.