Lock the Gate Alliance has raised concerns that the ALP State Government has not yet moved forward with some important promises made before the January state election, and called for them to put some runs on the board to protect communities.
Prior to the election, the ALP promised to:
- Review the Coordinator-General’s decision about the Acland mine stage 3 expansion and its impacts on the local community
- Commence a public Crime and Corruption Commission (CCC) inquiry into links between political donations and Newman Government decisions
- Restore the rights of landholders to object to proposed mining developments (a right expunged for coordinated projects by the previous LNP Government)
- Protect prime agricultural land from mining developments
- Undertake detailed scientific study into the impact of the Galilee Basin coal mines on the region’s water.
Lock the Gate’s spokesperson Kate Dennehy said, in marking the ALP’s first 100 days in government, that the group applauded the ALP’s sentiments and statements but hoped they were not ‘simply rhetoric’.
“Queenslanders were very supportive of the policy commitments on coal and unconventional gas mining made by the ALP in the lead-up to, and just after, the Queensland election,” she said.
“If implemented well, these commitments can go a substantial way to restoring some balance into the state’s mining law and democracy.
“But the time for talk is over and now Lock the Gate and mining-affected communities across Queensland would really like to see some progress on these commitments.
"The first big test is undoubtedly the Acland Stage 3 coal mine expansion on the Darling Downs. The community is becoming alarmed that the promised review into the mine has not yet started.
" There is also growing disquiet that the public inquiry into political donations during the last term of government has not commenced either, and that communities are still waiting to have their rights to object to coordinated mining projects restored.
"All of these important promises really need to be delivered before the Queensland Government makes a decision on the Acland coal mine - a mine that has been the centre of a $950,000 donations scandal.
“The ALP has a wonderful opportunity to show voters they do stand for accountability, transparency, a fair go for all and protection of our food-growing land, water and clean air. We encourage them to get cracking and take that opportunity.”