Coal Mine Rehabilitation Campaign

Members of Lock the Gate and the Mackay Conservation Group travelled to central Queensland to get footage of several of the mines in the area in order to evaluate how much rehabilitation has been undertaken at several sites. 

Check out the video at the link below to learn more about the campaign. If you want join and keep up to date with the progress of the campaign by filling in the form at the link below.

http://www.mackayconservationgroup.org.au/mine_rehab

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Greg Hunt - We have a problem

Great Barrier Reef Reaches Apocalypse Level Three Coral Bleaching Alert 

 

2015 was the hottest year on recordCoral_Bleaching_and_snorkellor.jpg

January 2016 - the hottest January on record

February 2016 - the hottest month ever recorded

In March 2016 we're heading to be the hottest year on record yet again.

In this Olympic year – these are not world records we want to be breaking!

AND our Great Barrier Reef is suffering…..

The Great Barrier Reef, once touted as the world’s best managed and healthiest reef system  in the world, is now facing a coral bleaching apocalypse.  Increased water temperatures brought on by global warming are cooking the northern section of the Reef, consider by scientists to be the most pristine region of the Reef.

Today  the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority (GBRMPA)  issued a level three coral bleaching alert,  based on wide-spread severe bleaching in the northern section of the reef.  

The federal environment minister, Greg Hunt, has talked down the event but he failed to address the scope and severity of the bleaching.

 

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Landclearing Reforms

land_clearing_photo_small.jpgGreenies! Tree huggers! They’re a couple of emotive terms for describing people who care about their local environment and want to see it protected for generations to come.

While some people seem to think that the environmental movement is hell-bent on stopping development and saving every last blade of grass, the reality is a lot different.

It may surprise you to know the types of people who contact the Mackay Conservation Group for help, and the diversity of issues we deal with every week.

Last week we had a call about neighbours polluting waterways with toxic waste, another person was concerned about the impact of coal dust on their health, yet another wanted to know what he could do about unauthorised coastal developments; and this is just to name a few.

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Shellgrit Creek Beautiful Walk

walk.jpgCalling all MCG peeps and Mackay locals! RSVP to come along to our second Beautiful Walk for 2016.

We will be meeting at Quota Park (crnr of Binnington Esplanade and Bridge Road) and walking all the way down to the mouth of Shellgrit Creek.

Some of the topics we may be hearing about include the history of Far Beach, environmental impacts that affect the area, natural foods as well as a small splash of bird watching (speaker list will be posted at a later date).

Far Beach ajoined mouth of the Pioneer River until a large cyclone, Eline, changed the course of history and the river. We can see evidence of the dynamic coastline of Mackay on this walk.

 

Numbers are limited, so book early.

Make sure you bring a hat and a water bottle. See you there!

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Mackay Leading Qld in Solar Installation

Multi-purpose solar car park in Spain.“We make it great in the Sunshine State!” went the old Queensland Government slogan in the 1970s and we are certainly doing a great job of using our sunshine in Mackay.

The worldwide demand for solar power has been growing exponentially in the past few years as the efficiency of panels has increased and production costs have fallen.

Here in Mackay more property owners are realising the benefits of solar power than anywhere else in Queensland.

In 2015 more rooftop solar was installed on properties in the 4740 postcode than in any other place in Australia, except Coondalup in Western Australia.

There was a decline in installations in Mackay compared with 2014 when we were by far the most solar savvy people in Australia, adding 5.9 megawatts of solar panels to our city’s roofs.

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Urannah Dam is for mining not agriculture

Irwin_Turtle_2.jpgUrannah Dam has been in the news a lot over the past year. Politicians have been talking up the proposal as a potential source of new water for agricultural land around Bowen. However, there are serious questions about whether farmers will ever see a drop of any water from this dam.

The Urannah Creek west of Eungella range is a beautiful place that has considerable environmental values. Its water flows into the Broken River and then into the Burdekin.It is home to the Irwin’s Turtle a unique species that was discovered in 1990 by Steve Irwin’s father Bob. 

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Bat Baby On Board!

Black_Flying_Fox_-_James_Niland.jpgWith female Black Flying-foxes giving birth and raising their young, we are again seeing an increase in numbers at several roosts around Mackay. The females elect to give birth in areas where there will be an abundant food supply while their young are dependent and learning to fly.

When first born, the young cling to their mothers belly fur as she flies out to feed at night. When they become a bit heavier, they are left to “creche” in the roost at night, with adult females often returning through the night to check on the creche, and to feed their own young. At about three months of age, the juveniles will begin to test their wings with short flights from the roost but continue to feed from their mother.

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Let’s make 2016 the year we clean up the mining mess

mtmorgan-30.jpegIt’s no surprise that mining creates a few environmental problems. One of the big ones is the costly exercise of restoring land after mining operations cease.

Across Queensland there are over 15,000 abandoned mines where work has stopped and no person or company can be legally required to restore the site. When that happens, the Queensland government must take action to make the site safe, both to the public and the environment.

At Mount Morgan, acid water leaches from the former gold mine into the Dee River, making the stream unfit for swimming, fishing and drinking for many kilometres. The government is trying to stabilise the Mount Morgan mine but it’s costing a fortune and no end date is in sight.
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Enjoy the Reef the Right Way

Maori Wrasse and snorkellorsExperiencing the Great Barrier Reef is on everybody’s bucket list.

After all, it is the most spectacularly diverse ecosystem on the planet.

The Reef is so big that you can see it from the surface of the moon.

It is home to tens of thousands of animals with over 1600 species of fish from Nemo to Jaws, including many vulnerable and endangered species.

But there are right ways and wrong ways to experience the Reef and, when it comes to fish, fish ‘framing’ is the wrong way.

Fish ‘framing’ involves dangling some form of bait such as fish heads or carcasses into the water to attract large fish to the surface and sometimes right out of the water and onto the deck for a photo opportunity.

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Mackay welcomes international air travellers

Bar Tailed GodwitWe all love Mackay’s beaches as a place to relax and have fun. But how often do we think of them as a home for birds?

Thousands of shorebirds depend on them, either to nest or to feed on. And as more and more of us use the beach for recreation, we need to be careful how we do it.

Our beaches host two main groups of shorebirds: ones which live here all year round and nest on the beach, such as Red-capped Plovers, and migratory shorebirds, such as Bar-tailed Godwits, which arrive from their northern hemisphere breeding grounds at the start of our summer, to fatten up by feeding on our tidal flats.

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