First Nations cultural heritage is under threat from multinational mining company Glencore’s coal mine expansion at the site of one of the Frontier Wars at Glendell, reports Pip Hinman.
Environmental Defenders Office
The Federal Court will travel to the Tiwi Islands to take evidence from Traditional Owners on Country who oppose the approval of Santos’ Barossa Gas Project. Rebecca Parker reports.
A coalition of environment groups warn against the Victorian Parliament bringing in new anti-protest laws which would even stop Traditional Owners from protecting Country. Chloe DS reports.
The community group Groundswell Gloucester in the Upper Hunter Valley scored another win on May 8 when Gloucester Resources Limited (GRL) announced it would not appeal against a Land and Environment Court decision to refuse consent for its Rocky Hill Coal Project.
Justice Brian Preston of the Land and Environment Court ruled on February 8 against approving a new open-cut coalmine just outside Gloucester.
Environment groups say new land-clearing laws, expected to be put before the Queensland parliament this week, contain loopholes that could allow the continued clearing of high-value vegetation where landowners have already “locked in” their vegetation maps.
Queensland is responsible for more land clearing than the rest of the country combined. Rates of clearing surged when the former Liberal National Party (LNP) government under Premier Campbell Newman scrapped restrictions in December 2013.
Justice Peter Applegarth of the Supreme Court rejected on June 23 the application by New Acland Coal (NAC) for judicial review of the Queensland Land Court’s decision, which recommended rejecting the Stage 3 expansion of the New Hope Mine. He said he was not satisfied irreparable harm would be caused to New Acland Coal and other third parties if a stay was not ordered.
The controversial Adani Carmichael coalmine was granted an unlimited 60-year water licence by the Queensland government on March 29. Environmentalists fear the mine will drain huge amounts of water from the Great Artesian Basin and say it is yet another example of governments giving the mine special treatment.
The federal environment minister Josh Frydenberg has again approved the use of a marine supply base at Port Melville in the Tiwi Islands without an environmental impact assessment and with none of the environmental conditions that were previously imposed.
A spokesperson for Frydenberg said on December 15: “The department has decided the operation of a marine supply base at Port Melville is not likely to have a significant impact on the environment and can proceed without further assessment under national environment law.
The Federal Court has overturned the federal government’s decision to allow a $180 million deep sea port on Melville Island near Darwin without an environmental assessment.
Approval of the Port Melville oil and gas marine supply base on the banks of the near pristine Apsley Strait was reversed on October 21 after legal action by the Environmental Defenders Office (EDO) on behalf of Environment Centre NT (ECNT).
The decision means the operation of the base at Port Melville now has no Commonwealth approval and all operations must cease.
The Environmental Defenders Office Queensland (EDO), on behalf of the Australian Conservation Foundation (ACF), lodged an appeal on September 19 against the Federal Court’s finding in August that then-environment minister Greg Hunt’s approval of Adani’s Carmichael coalmine was lawful.
The appeal challenges the lawfulness of the court’s finding that the minister was entitled to find the impact on global warming and the Great Barrier Reef from the Carmichael mine’s 4.6 billion tonnes of carbon emissions was “speculative”.