July 27, 2016
The Kingaroy Concerned Citizens Group (KCCG) will be holding a second public meeting to protest plans by Moreton Resources to open a coal mine near Kingaroy.
The meeting will be held at Kingaroy Town Hall on Thursday, August 11 at 7:00pm.
KCCG president Gary Tessmann said he believed two factors would decide the future of Moreton’s proposal: the weight of public opinion and the community’s response to Moreton’s application for a mining lease.
Mr Tessmann said he thought a big effort from the community was needed now.
This was because most mines are approved by Government if they reach the Environmental Impact Statement stage, he said.
In February, the KCCG held a similar meeting which attracted more than 900 people.
After hearing a presentation by the group about possible adverse effects from the mine on matters ranging from local aquifers to air quality, water quality and property values, the meeting gave an almost unanimous thumbs down to the mine proposal.
Mr Tessmann said that since the last forum there had been a number of new developments, including suggestions the company would send coal by rail or through sea water pipelines to a port for export.
He said the KCCG had also obtained more data on mine dust, noise and light and the possible effects these might have on health, and had obtained modelling of possible property price changes if the mine opens.
“The company has commissioned a survey to suggest that the 935 people who voted against the mine in February were misinformed and that the vote at the forum was not a true indication of community opinion,” Mr Tessmann said.
“They have used their own figures in their application to the Commonwealth government already, and they will no doubt use them again to support their application to the State Government.
“Most importantly though, the values and opinions of the local community are needed to signal opposition to the mine to the State and Commonwealth Governments as they decide the future of the mine.”
“As the approval process gets underway, the opportunity for the local community to influence the outcome becomes more formalised and somewhat limited.”
Mr Tessmann said the KCCG plan to make submissions to the terms of reference for the Environmental Impact Study (EIS), and then make further submissions once the EIS study is complete.
“The window to make submissions at each stage is only 40 days, so preparation for these should begin now, and the KCCG are seeking support from the South Burnett community to do this complex and specialised task.”
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