Queensland Government to wind back cropping land protection

Published: October 24, 2013

The Lock the Gate Alliance has issued a call to action to regional and rural Queenslanders as the Government embarks on an unprecedented assault on the countryside.

The government has today released a review of the Strategic Cropping Land Act that proposes repealing the legislation, less than two years after it came into force. This move comes off the back of new rules to speed up coal exploration and lock in regional plans that include no provision for protection of vital water resources from coal and gas mining.

Lock the Gate National Campaigner, Phil Laird said, “In just one week, the Government has sped up the release of new coal exploration areas, signed an MOU to speed up project approvals and proposed to tear up the Strategic Cropping Land Act: it’s an assault on the countryside that has ignored the input of rural people."

The report notes that 960 submissions were received about the Strategic Cropping Land review, and Lock the Gate Alliance can reveal that 96% of these submissions came from its network and called for Strategic Cropping Land protections to be strengthened.

“The Government is under pressure from the resources industry to allow mining everywhere, they're ignoring their constituents in the bush who just want some peace of mind. There won’t be any peace until there is proper protection for agricultural land, bushland and precious groundwater from coal and gas mining.

“The Springsure Creek coal mine proposed for near Springsure, as one example, would undermine strategic cropping land in the heart of a priority agricultural area. If the government can't say an outright “no” to that project, then no agricultural land is safe.”

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