AMCS: Queenslanders Want Total Ban on Dumping (Australia)
The true test of Deputy Premier Jeff Seeney’s new “commitment to protect environmental areas” will be whether he follows through with stronger protection for the Great Barrier Reef, according to the Australian Marine Conservation Society (AMCS).
Australian Marine Conservation Society, Great Barrier Reef campaign director, Felicity Wishart, said there was a real opportunity for the Queensland Government to end special treatment for the mining industry, but it would require urgent action not just words.
“If Mr Seeney is genuine about ending an ‘open slather’ approach to mining development, he should stop fast-tracking industrial development that places the Reef at risk,” Ms Wishart said today.
“Just last month, the Queensland Government announced reduced royalties for Galilee Basin coal miners and other support to enable Abbot Point to become the world’s largest coal port, just 50kms from the Whitsunday Islands.
“The Queensland government is on the brink of allowing one of the world’s natural wonders to become an industrial park of mega ports and a shipping superhighway.
“The fragile condition of the Reef demonstrates the urgent need for tough limits on future development. It would help protect a $6 billion tourism industry and 63,000 jobs that depend on a healthy Reef.
“The majority of Queenslanders want a total ban on the dumping of dredge waste in the Reef’s World Heritage area.
“There’s strong support from scientists, local tourism operators, commercial and recreational fishers and concerned community members for making it official.
“A robust economy relies on a healthy Reef. Sustainable economic development and strong environmental protection can combine for a new era of prosperity in Queensland resource.
“Mr Seeney will be judged on his actions not his words,” Ms Wishart said.
Press Release, December 4, 2013