Recently 4000 Darling Downs residents put forward a petition urging the government to reinstate mining objection rights.
Recently 4000 Darling Downs residents put forward a petition urging the government to reinstate mining objection rights. Tim Braban

Labor restores community mining objection rights

THE controversial Newman government decision to restrict landholders, community and conservationists mining objection rights has been overturned.

Environmentalists have praised Mines Minister Anthony Lynham's urgent motion to restore community objection rights.

Despite opposition from the LNP, the bill received the backing of Katter's Australian Party and Independent MP Billy Gordon.

The Newman government amended legislation last year so people could not object to mining projects that the Co-ordinator General decided had addressed environmental effects.

Environmental Defenders Office Queensland's Jo Bragg praised the Palaszczuk government's amendment but said more could be done.

"Looking ahead, more legislation needs to be passed to fully restore public objection rights as this Bill only dealt with 'co-ordinated' or major projects," Ms Bragg said.

"These rights are crucially important in the public interest so the costs and benefits of projects with huge impacts can be debated and tested in the independent Land Court.

"Let's not forget that mining resources are the public property of all Queenslanders."

It comes only days after about 4000 Darling Downs residents concerned about the New Acland Coal Mine Stage Three project put forward a petition urging the government to reinstate mining objection rights.

Queensland Resources Council chief Michael Roche said the legislation change would cost the state millions of dollars in lost royalties and allow anti-mining groups to delay projects.

He described it as a deliberate waste of the Land Court's time.

- APN NEWSDESK



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