Greens slam green-tape bill

Greens Senator Larissa Water
Greens Senator Larissa Water

A NEWMAN Government bid to remove 12% of the state's Environmental Protection Act will lead to reduced environmental standards, says Queensland Greens Senator Larissa Waters.

Queensland Environment Minister Andrew Powell introduced a green-tape reduction bill in state parliament on Tuesday.

Mr Powell said the bill could save business some $11.7 million in costs associated with delays and regulatory duplication every year.

He said the bill was part of the government's commitment to cut red tape by 20%.

The bill redrafts parts of the act that relate to licensing environmentally-relevant activities.

It could mean resource and mining companies would need to put in only one application for licensing numerous sites, rather than multiple applications.

But Senator Waters said she did not want to see environmental protection and community involvement sacrificed for business confidence.

"We are concerned that streamlining environmental assessment processes will inevitably lead to reduced environmental standards, and will be watching the effect of this state legislation closely," she said.

"Campbell Newman's record on environmental matters to date has been appalling - disassembling the Environment Department, winding back state climate programs, saying he will repeal Wild River laws, de-funding a large solar farm and describing World Heritage protection for our Great Barrier Reef as a problem for the Queensland coast.

"Queenslanders are proud of our state's natural assets and their beauty, and they won't stand for them being sold out to mining magnates and big developers in pursuit of private profits."

Topics:  greens larissa waters

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