23.8 C
Byron Shire
April 19, 2024

Mines will drain central Qld water: report

Latest News

Can Council’s overturn their decisions?

NSW Labor planning minister, Paul Scully, when asked about the Wallum estate by local MP Tamara Smith (Greens)  in...

Other News

A festival in laneways

Mullumbimby, a town known for its abundance of artists and creatives with a passion for what drives them, is set to host the much-anticipated Laneways Festival 2024 on May 4 and 5.

Local grom takes national tube-riding prize

Local grom takes national tube-riding prize. Broken Head surfer Leihani Zoric has taken out first place in the U/14 girls and best barrel (girl) categories of the Australian Junior Online Surf Championships.

Grand opening in Casino on Saturday

Richmond Valley Council says the upgraded Casino Showground and Racecourse will be a major hub for events in regional NSW, with a focus on horse-related activities.

Reclaiming childhood in the ‘device age’

A century and a half ago, the visionary Henry David Thoreau declared people had become ‘the tool of their tools.’  In this device-driven age of smartphones, social media, and artificial intelligence, few observations could be seen as more prescient. 

Rural roads need a path to recovery

The recent and continuing rains have turned many of our roads into a sodden mud puddle and the NSW Farmers have renewed calls for real action on road infrastructure funding after continual damage on roads and bridges across the state.

Alpha Coal Mine Test Pit
The Alpha Mine test pit in Queensland. Photo courtesy Lock The Gate Alliance. © Greenpeace/Andrew Quilty

Proposed coal mines will drain the equivalent of two-and-a-half Sydney harbours of groundwater in central Queensland, a report says.

Released on Monday and commissioned by anti-mining group Lock the Gate Alliance, the report assesses mining proposals and analyses potential groundwater impacts in the Galilee basin in the state’s central west.

Several mining companies have proposed more than 34 open cut and 11 underground coal mines along a 270 kilometre stretch of the cattle grazing country.

Authored by former senior Queensland government water bureaucrat Tom Crothers, the report says the mine projects combined will have an enormous impact on groundwater levels.

Mr Crothers suggests they could also interfere with the Great Artesian Basin.

The report says federal and state governments have failed to assess the cumulative impacts the mining projects will have on groundwater relied upon by farmers and towns.

‘Groundwater drawdown will significantly reduce the ability for surrounding graziers and towns to supply their water needs,’ it says.

Mr Crothers estimates the mines would consume a total of 1,354 billion litres over project life estimations of between 30 and 90 years.

This is the equivalent of two-and-a-half Sydney Harbours removed from underground storages. Towns affected include Jericho and Alpha, west of Emerald.

Lock the Gate Alliance spokeswoman Ellie Smith says mining approvals in the area should be suspended until the government undertakes further studies.

‘Our communities depend on groundwater – it’s our lifeblood,’ she said.

‘The coal companies and our governments are treating us with contempt by rushing ahead to develop these damaging mines without even quantifying the true risk to the region’s water resources.’


Support The Echo

Keeping the community together and the community voice loud and clear is what The Echo is about. More than ever we need your help to keep this voice alive and thriving in the community.

Like all businesses we are struggling to keep food on the table of all our local and hard working journalists, artists, sales, delivery and drudges who keep the news coming out to you both in the newspaper and online. If you can spare a few dollars a week – or maybe more – we would appreciate all the support you are able to give to keep the voice of independent, local journalism alive.

LEAVE A REPLY

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

The bridges of Ballina Council

Ballina Shire Council has started preliminary investigation works at Fishery Creek Bridge, on River Street, and Canal Bridge, on Tamarind Drive, as part of their plan to duplicate both bridges.

Tweed Council wants your ideas on future sports facilities

Tweed Council is looking for feedback from residents about future plans for sport and recreation in the area.

REDinc’s new Performing Arts Centre is go!

It’s been a long wait, but two years on from the 2022 flood REDinc in Lismore have announced the official opening of a new Performing Arts Centre.

Not enough letters like this about Gaza in The Echo?

The Echo’s studied indifference to the plight of the Palestinians and its reluctance to publish letters on the subject reveals the moral fibre of...