Start the Switch Employment Opportunity

Would you love to work with young people on building a sustainable future? Mackay Conservation Group is looking for a motivated, passionate and organised person to organise the Start the Switch Summit in Mackay in 2015.

Start the Switch is an initiative of the Australian Youth Climate Coalition that reaches, inspires and motivates high school students to take action on climate change and environmental sustainability.

The position is part time (two days per week) until 31 May 2015. Click here to download a position description, or call Ellen on 0408 583 694 if you have any questions.

Applications close Monday 22nd September.

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Our Cup of Sunshine Runs Over

Did you get down to Mackay's Cup of Sunshine event on Tuesday August 19, when we wrote letters to Glenn Lazarus from Palmer United, asking him to support the Renewable Energy Target, which helps the renewable energy industries achieve 20% of all Australia's energy coming from clean sources? 

Well good on you, because Lazarus has confirmed less than two weeks later all PUP Senators will vote against Abbot's solar killing plan. Lazarus even went so far as to say that, 'the majority of Australians want Australia to move away from dirty fuel like coal and to increase our use of renewable energy sources.'

We couldn't agree more.

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Abbot Point case will continue in spite of onshore dumping moves

Legal case against Abbot Point dumping will continue

Rumours are circulating that the companies wanting to build Abbot Point coal terminals will propose a land based dumping option to address concerns about the impact of dumping dredge spoil in the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park.

In March this year MCG launched legal action against the Environment Minister Greg Hunt’s decision to approve dredging and dumping for the proposed Abbot Point coal terminal expansion.

‘We would need to see any alternative proposal to determine how far it goes towards addressing all our concerns and whether it affects the current Federal Court case.

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Save the Miraculous Bum Breathing Turtle and our very own Eungella Honeyeater

Why is September 7 Threatened Species Day?

Because on that day in 1936 the last Tasmanian Tiger died in Hobart Zoo.

The fate of the Tasmanian Tiger reminds all of us of the importance of looking after threatened species. We have two local species which are under threat and need better protection. The first is Irwin’s ‘bum-breathing’ turtle found only in small areas of suitable habitat in the Burdekin River Basin. One of these habitats is in the Broken River where Urannah Dam is being proposed. The other species is the Eungella honeyeater currently listed as near-threatened.


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Government Inquiry queries legality of Seeney’s Galilee Basin plan

MEDIA RELEASE: 13th August

A Parliamentary Inquiry into the Galilee Basin State Development Area (SDA) has thrown doubt over Deputy Premier Jeff Seeney’s plans for rail lines from proposed coal mines in central Queensland to the Abbot Point terminal.

The Queensland government declared the Galilee Basin State Development Area in June so it had the power to buy up property for the coal rail lines.

‘The SDA fails to meet the basic legal test of being in the public interest and should be immediately withdrawn,’ said Dr Moira Williams of the Mackay Conservation Group.

The majority of landholders in the State Development Areaare opposed to it’s declaration and the SDA has now been referred to the State Development Infrastructure and Industry Committee to scrutinise its legality.

‘The SDA is an abuse of power and totally unnecessary. There are existing provisions in the legislation that allow for compulsory acquisition of land to build the rail lines,’ said Ms Williams.

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Mackay Conservation Group on the 7.30 Report

Infrastructure company The Mitchell Group plans for a new coal port at Hay Point, this one using untested barging technologies in the Great Barrier Reef.

Last month the 7.30 Report visited Mackay, speaking with concerned locals including myself and Betty Hobbs from Mackay Conservation Group. Click on the link below to watch the story:

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Tell Australian Banks not to risk the Reef!

Right now, Australia's big banks are deciding whether to put their money into Abbot Point; a project that would result in 3million cubic, metres of dredge spoil being dumped in the Marine Park. 

The banks must be made aware of the community concerns and the impacts of sea dumping on our Reef, the $6 billion tourism industry, jobs, and our way of life. We have launched a petition calling on Australian Banks not to invest in the Abbot Point expansion – you can sign the petition here.

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Did you know about the legend of the Mackay Monster?

Sunday, 27 July 2014

Sunday was a beautiful Winter's day and the Pioneer River was at its best, high tide, when our group of about sixty history explorers headed off along the Pioneer Promenade. There were 10 viewing stages in the walk from the Forgan Bridge to Hospital Bridge. The viewing areas under the large umbrellas were comfortable places for the group to relax and listen to the history of  Cremorne and the Pioneer Bridges.

To download the walk brochure click here.

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Mackay Oral Histories Project

What events have shaped the health of the Mackay coastline? Mackay Conservation Group are calling on the community to share their stories of fishing, reef, ports and leisure along the Mackay coast...

Anyone interested in participating please complete our expression of interest form by clicking here.

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Carmichael Mine Approved Despite Impacts on Water, Habitat and the Reef

The Federal government’s decision today to approve Adani’s Carmichael coal mega mine in Western Queensland is blind to the devastation it will cause to water, habitat and the local environment says Mackay Conservation Group.

‘Carmichael will be one of the world’s biggest coal mines and the environmental impacts of the mine as well as associated infrastructure, such as ports and rail, are simply unacceptable,’ said Mackay Conservation Group Co-ordinator Ellen Roberts.

‘The mine will use 12 billion litres of water every year. This water will be pumped from underground sources which are vital to maintaining agriculture and wildlife in this dry environment. There will be drops to the water table ten kilometres from the mine.’

‘The conditions placed on the mine relate to further studies on impact on groundwater and species, which raises concerns that Greg Hunt did not adequately understand the impacts of this mine before making the approval.’

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