Media Release: 2/11/2020
Dams plan was a political fizzer
The outcome of last weekend’s Queensland election shows that voters could not be swayed by the promise of the biggest dam building program in Australia’s history.
The LNP promised to build a major new dam on the Burdekin River to irrigate dry lands in the interior of Queensland. The scheme would have cost tens of billions of dollars and led to unsustainable reductions in freshwater flowing to coastal ecosystems, including estuaries that fisheries depend upon.
The policy was targeted at voters in key electorates in Townsville. In an announcement in August, LNP leader Deb Frecklington said “the biggest benefit will be felt in Townsville” and “[the] project that will secure Townsville’s economic future for generations to come”. Voters returned ALP candidates in all three Townsville seats with swings of about three per cent.Read more
Media Release: 25/09/2020
The Burdekin Basin needs integrated, multi-purpose catchment
Speaking at seminar held in Townsville last week, eminent scientist John Williams warned that if urgent action is not taken, the Burdekin River could follow the same path to degradation as the Murray Darling River. Professor Williams, Adjunct Professor at the Australian National University and founding member of the Wentworth Group of Concerned Scientists, said that with multiple proposals for new dams on the Burdekin River, action is needed now.Read more
(As published in full in the Townsville Bulletin, Tuesday 3 October, 2017 - "Dredging spells stress")
Port Expansion – not with a bang but a whimper!
The decision of the Queensland Coordinator General to approve the massive expansion of the Townsville Port is another sad day for anyone genuinely interested in the beauty, the attractiveness and liveability of Townsville.
Yes, the project was subject to environmental impact assessment, but to call this rigorous is not true. The system involves the port employing consultants to prepare a report on the impact of the proposed development. Public comments on this report are considered (or dismissed) by the port and it is the port who delivers the findings to the government. The fox is well and truly in charge of the hen-house.
The widening, deepening and endless annual maintenance dredging of the port access channel will have direct impacts on the reefs, sea grasses and marine environment on which many marine species (including dugongs, dolphins, turtles and fish) depend, and which generations of Townsvilleans have enjoyed over life times. With annual dumping of hundreds of thousands of maintenance dredge spoil in the waters between Magnetic Island and Cleveland Bay and this being continually re-suspended by currents and wind driven waves, how could this be otherwise?
Residents and visitors to the island will tell you that the reefs and marine environment have been declining for decades – the marine tourism experience for our children, ourselves and our tourists is much diminished, shamefully, on our watch.Read more
The #StopAdani Roadshow returns to Townsville on 27 April after the original event was cancelled due to Cyclone Debbie. Organisers are expecting to the 400 seat theatre at Event Cinema.
“The momentum to Stop Adani just keeps growing. We are excited by how many North Queenslanders are getting behind this event and joining the movement to Stop Adani” says North Queensland Conservation Council coordinator Maree Dibella.
“Communities are putting on film screenings in Port Douglas, Cairns, Mackay and Rockhampton. There are over 110 community groups leading campaigns in their towns and suburbs, with 12 just in regional Queensland.Read more
Today in Canberra, veteran environmentalist Bob Brown will join community leaders from around the country to launch the ‘Stop Adani Alliance’ and build the biggest movement in Australia’s history to stop Adani’s dangerous coal mine and end coal for good.
North Queensland Conservation Council (NQCC) is a founding member of the Alliance.
NQCC co-ordinator Maree Dibella said, “It’s great to see people from around the country join our fight to stop the Adani’s mine from going ahead. I know there is a lot of local support here in Townsville for this campaign, but I also know we can’t win this on our own.”Read more
In an expected but infuriating and unreasonable move, the Queensland government yesterday approved an environmental authority (EA) for Adani in relation to what is being referred to as ‘the $16 billion Carmichael Coal Mine and Rail Project’. The obvious flaw in this title is, of course, that Adani does not have the $16 billion – and has precious little chance of raising it.
The EA is the second last legislative approval needed – the last being a mining lease. This will be approved (or not!) by the Department of Natural Resources and Mines, the bailiwick of Dr Andrew Lytham. Minister Lytham has said that he is not interested in ‘fast-tracking’ the project (a request of Adani and Townsville Enterprise Limited, amongst others) and that it has to go through due process.Read more