Landholders say proper compensation measures are needed if groundwater is affected by the giant Alpha coal mine planned for Queensland’s Galilee Basin.
Since September, Queensland’s Land Court in Brisbane has been hearing a legal challenge from pastoralists and environmentalists against the GVK Hancock Alpha Coal Project, east of Rockhampton.
The Land Court in Brisbane is hearing final arguments today in the case opposing the mine that would see part of the Bimblebox Nature Refuge cleared.
The closing oral arguments are being heard from people in the Brisbane court and also via videolink from Emerald.
Landholders Jeneice Anderson and Bruce Currie told the court their cattle businesses near the proposed mine rely on groundwater.
They said there have been no steps to assess the present state of their bores, and how they should be compensated if water levels plummet from mining.
Earlier today, Coast and Country spokesman Derec Davies said farmers and conservationists were not intimidated by the Australia’s richest woman, Gina Rinehart.
“There are so many flaws in their approach that we have great concerns about and we want this mine to not be approved,” he said.
“This is Queensland’s coal – the Government manages that resource on behalf of the citizens of Queensland.
“It’s Queensland’s coal, it’s Queensland’s environment, it’s Queensland’s water, and we want that protected.”
Bimblebox spokeswoman Paola Cassoni says she hopes farmers and conservations concerns are heard.
“The groundwater is what brings it all to a head, as there will be major impacts on our aquifers,” she said.
“Bimblebox as a nature refuge will have that impact within the system that is dependent on groundwater, which is our ecology.”
A decision is expected before the end of the year.