Lock the Gate welcomes ALP’s commitment to renewable energy but questions its commitments on mining

Published: May 19, 2015

The Lock the Gate Alliance welcomes the Queensland Government’s commitment to renewable energy in the run-up to Brisbane’s Rally for the Future on Thursday.

The group’s president, Drew Hutton said the rally will highlight the need to save Queensland’s water, air, food and communities from invasive mining. Speakers will also question the State Government’s commitment to accountability and transparency.

Mr Hutton said the government’s Minister for Energy and Water Supply, Mark Bailey showed “visionary good sense” in committing to the ALP’s pre-election promise to generate 50 per cent of its electricity needs from renewable energy by 2030, and to ensure that one million of its homes had rooftop solar by 2012.

He said, however, that the Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk and the Natural Resources and Mines Minister, Anthony Lynham were sending out conflicting messages by encouraging irresponsible mining projects and refusing to honour promises on:

  • Conducting rigorous scrutiny of the Acland coal mine expansion and
  • Protection of Wild Rivers in the Cooper Basin.

The government was also dragging its heels on other important reforms they committed to including:

  • An enquiry into political donations
  • Saving Queensland’s water and food-producing lands
  • Re-introducing people’s right to object to mining.

“Queensland has wonderful opportunities to promote renewable energy to create jobs and great economic outcomes here,” Mr Hutton said. “It's unfortunate the Palaszczuk government is not optimising the advantages this state has to offer.”

Lock the Gate has brought together speakers from city and country and different political persuasions for its rally at Speakers’ Corner outside State Parliament.

“It’s not just country people who will be impacted by expansion of these industries; if our water resources are put at risk and our farming land is given over to mining, all Queenslanders will suffer,” he said.

“New York is on the cusp of banning fracking because of its impacts and Queensland should learn from the experiences in the United States.”

Rally speakers will include Shay Dougall from the Hopeland Community Sustainability Group, GP Dr Geralyn McCarron, Queensland Senators Glenn Lazarus and Larissa Waters, and Indigenous leader Sam Watson.

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