High Court reserves New Acland decision

High Court reserves New Acland decision

News
The High Court has reserved its decision on the New Acland Stage 3 coal mine.

The High Court has reserved its decision on the New Acland Stage 3 coal mine.

Aa

The High Court has reserved its decision on the New Acland Stage 3 coal mine.

Aa

THE High Court has reserved its decision on the New Acland Stage 3 coal mine north of Oakey.

The High Court is ruling on an appeal from the Oakey Coal Action Alliance on a Queensland Court of Appeal decision in 2019.

New Hope Group chief operating officer Andrew Boyd said it was not known when the High Court decision would be handed down.

Opponents of the mine say Stage Three will destroy both underground water resources and prime agricultural land.

However, the claims are seemingly at odds with the track record of mined land being rehabilitated and the development of a 4000 head cattle operation at the New Hope Group owned property.

In addition, all of the water used in the mining operation is bought from Toowoomba city's Wurtulla water treatment facility via a 47km long pipeline, eliminating the need to use ground water in the mining operation.

Mr Boyd said regardless of the timing of the High Court decision, Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk had proven the approvals process was not tied to court proceedings.

"By approving Olive Downs last week, the Premier has demonstrated the government's willingness to grant approvals for resource projects in circumstances where court proceedings exist," Mr Boyd said.

"The Olive Downs project is subject to a judicial review in the Supreme Court and yet the Premier proclaimed it good to go.

"This is great news for Olive Downs and also means the Minister is able to make a decision on New Acland Stage 3."

Mr Boyd said he invited Ms Palaszczuk and her ministers to visit New Acland to give the New Acland workforce and the local community the news it had been waiting on, for the past 13 years.

He said New Acland Stage 3 would create 487 new jobs within 18 months of approvals. It would also provide more than $7 billion in economic benefit to Queensland.

Prior to today's developments, Lock the Gate Alliance spokesperson Ellie Smith said New Hope has pulled out all stops to pressure the government to wave the approval through.

"We commend the Queensland Palaszczuk Government for standing firm in the face of this pressure and allowing the High Court to consider this matter properly before any further decisions are made by governments," Ms Smith said.

Opposition Leader Deb Frecklington said the mine will be approved if the LNP wins government on October 31.

Aa

From the front page

Sponsored by