Bats in Walkerston

You might have been following the issues with the new bat colony that has taken up residence near Walkerston. Patricia Julien of MCG is calling for a long term and ecologically sound resolution to issues with bat colonies: below is a letter to the editor submitted to the Daily Mercury:

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Many locals believe that most of the flying foxes near Bakers Creek bridge in Walkerston came from the dispersal of 4,800 flying foxes at North Eton which cost Mackay Regional Council around $45,000. Initially the animals dispersed some 1.5 km into four smaller colonies but did not leave the region.[1] As flying foxes are migratory animals that follow food sources much of the colony will likely move on after April but at present they have grown to numbers that are causing persistent sound and odour problems for neighbouring land owners. They are also likely to return when food again becomes more abundant.

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MCG challenges Adani's environmental record

In January this year, MCG launched a legal challenge to Federal Environment Minister Greg Hunt’s approval of the Carmichael coal mine. We said that Greg Hunt ignored the contribution of the mine to increased greenhouse gasses and climate change.

Last week we added a further ground to our challenge. Reading over the documents from the case, it was clear that Greg Hunt had chosen to ignore Adani’s poor environmental record in India, even though he knew that Adani had recently been found guilty of violating India’s environment laws in connection with their development at the Mundra Port.

You can read media coverage of this latest addition to our case in the Courier Mail, the Guardian, and the Sydney Morning Herald and at the ABC online.

Getup! travelled to India to talk to people who are living with the environmental devastation at Adani’s Indian port, click below to watch the video.

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new proposal for dredge spoil dumping at Abbot Point

On 11 March the new government announced their new proposal for the Abbot Point expansion, which shifted dredge spoil from the Caley Valley wetlands to a site immediately adjacent on the former site of terminal 2.

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The series of new proposals at Abbot Point are the result of community, scientific and international concern about the compatibility of expanding coal export infrastructure at a time when the health of the Great Barrier Reef is in serious decline.

No-one wants to see increased sediment in the wetlands and the Reef as a result of the new proposal. The new development at Abbot Point was discussed at our last volunteer meeting and the views of the MCG volunteers on the new proposal are summarised at our website. Comments welcome.

The following summarises a discussion at a Mackay Conservation Group volunteers meeting on Thursday 19 March. Please leave any comments below:

 

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Vote for the Reef Scorecard

The Reef is shaping up as one of the key election issues, and Laura at Mackay Conservation Group has rated all of the parties on their policies on the Reef as well as other crucial environmental issues.

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 Click read more below to see the full rating for the Mirani electorate.

 

 

 

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Taking water for make good agreements

One question that has attracted little to no attention in the controversy about make good agreements for the dewatering of groundwater by the coal and gas industry is where will the mining industry will find the water to meet make good agreement requirements?

I recently prepared an EPBC Referral submission on the Galilee Water Pty Ltd. proposal to take water through two initial diversions from the Cape and Campaspe Rivers in the upper reaches of the Burdekin River and store it for water supply to the Galilee Basin. Galilee Water is a dollar company headed by Keith de Lacey the instigator of Cubbie Station which proposes to take up to 214,000ML/year[1]. That is 38 per cent of the volume of Sydney Harbour.

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New legal challenge of Carmichael mine

MEDIA RELEASE: Thursday 15 January, 2015:
The Mackay Conservation Group (MCG), has launched court proceedings challenging Environment Minister Greg Hunt and mining company Adani Enterprises over the approval of the controversial Carmichael coal mine in Queensland. 

MCG will be represented in this case by EDO NSW, a community legal centre specialising in public interest environmental matters. 

MCG is calling for the July 2014 approval to be rendered invalid on the grounds the Minister failed under his duty laid down by the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation (EPBC) Act to take down stream greenhouse gas emissions from the mine into account.

If successful, this test case could change how governments assess fossil fuel projects such as coal mines.
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Make your submission on the Abbot Point coal terminal

The Queensland government wants to dredge 1.7 million cubic metres from the Great Barrier Reef World Heritage Area and then dump this material into settling ponds in the Caley Valley wetlands, wiping out habitat for endangered and migratory birds and risking sediment running back into the Reef.

If you have two minutes, please make a submission to Greg Hunt: https://caleyvalley.good.do/stop-fast-tracking-abbot-point-dredging-and-dumping/send-in-a-submission-to-protect-the-reef-wetlands/

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Mackay Conservation Group AGM

We celebrated another year at the Mackay Conservation Group AGM on December 2nd.

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Beautiful Walk at Black's Beach Spit

Our final Beautiful Walk for the year was at Black's Beach Spit. The walk was organised and led by new MCG Management Committee member Pierre Craven. We learnt about the unique plants and animals of the spit, including migratory birds, the importance of mangroves and all the different insects that interact with green ants.

We'll be continuing the Beautiful Walks in 2015 so keep an eye out!

 

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#noadanihandouts launched!

In response to news last week that the Queensland government would be forking out hundreds of millions of dollars for Adani's rail project to connect controversial mines in the Galilee Basin with the Abbot Point coal terminal, on 27 November we launched #noadanihandouts, a photo petition to the Queensland government about all the things you'd rather see instead of handouts to massive mining companies.

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