Breaking News - Federal Court agrees lack of assessment on Adani’s water pipeline scheme an error of law

 

 

Media Release

 

25 May 2021

 

Federal Court agrees lack of assessment on Adani’s water pipeline scheme an error of law

 

Mackay Conservation Group has welcomed news today that the Federal Court has agreed that the Morrison Government made an error of law when it decided not to apply the ‘water trigger’ to the assessment of Adani’s North Galilee Water Scheme (NGWS).

 

Under Federal regulations, coal projects that extract a significant amount of water are required to submit a rigorous environmental impact statement. This water trigger was not originally applied to Adani’s Water Scheme.  

 

Sunny Hungerford, Campaign Manager at Mackay Conservation Group says:

“Today’s decision is a victory for Queensland’s water and the people and ecosystems that depend on it. In the Government’s rush to approve Adani’s plan to pipe 12.5 Billion litres from the Suttor River each year, they failed to apply proper scrutiny, and failed to properly consider the negative impacts that such a risky water plan could have on surrounding ecosystems, sacred sites, farmers and even towns. 

 

While Queensland’s farmers have battled one of the worst droughts in decades Adani should not be allowed to drain 12.5 billion litres of river water each year just to wash coal and suppress dust at their coal mine. 

 

Adani’s coal project is having devastating impacts on Queensland’s water from sucking up precious groundwater that feed ancient springs and wetlands, failing to manage erosion and polluting waterways with sediment. Today’s court decision proves that additional scrutiny and assessment of Adani’s impacts on water is needed. 



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Adani’s sediment pollution and failed flood preparation prompts calls to strengthen environmental protection conditions

Media Release

19 May 2021

An expert report, ordered by the Queensland Coordinator General to investigate Adani’s flood mitigation and sediment control measures on its rail line has concluded that Adani is not following best practice erosion and sediment control guidelines. 

 

The expert report by consultants from Water and Technology found that: 

 

  • Adani failed to follow its own erosion and sediment control guidelines by conducting works in waterways during the wet season 
  • Adani failed to prepare sites for flooding leading to unnecessary sediment pollution 
  • Approval conditions for future projects of a similar nature be strengthened to “prohibit works in waterways during the wet season”

Lawyers from Environmental Justice Australia, acting for Mackay Conservation Group have written to the office of the Queensland Coordinator General calling on them to use existing powers to strengthen environmental conditions and monitoring at Adani’s coal mine and rail projects in light of the concerns the expert report has raised. 

 

Sunny Hungerford, campaign manager at Mackay Conservation Group says: 

“The Water and Technology report shows that Adani breached their own guidelines by conducting works in waterways during the wet season and failed to properly prepare sites for flooding which led to sediment pollution. It’s critically important that the Coordinator General's office strengthen the project conditions to specifically prohibit any construction works in waterways during the wet season.”

 

“The fact that Adani can get away with this shows just how weak and ineffective the environmental conditions the Queensland government has imposed on Adani are. In this case Adani was allowed to get away with failing to prepare for flood events and causing pollution of waterways. 

 

“Adani appears to have a full deck of get out of jail free cards, but Queenslanders expect better management of our precious water and natural assets. This is our backyard that Adani is polluting. Farmers and towns are working hard to protect our waterways from pollution, and companies like Adani should have to do the right thing as well.” 

 

“The Water Technology report makes numerous recommendations for the improvement of erosion and sediment control measures along the rail line project, but it is unclear how Adani’s compliance with implementing the recommendations may be enforced without strengthening the project’s approval conditions and setting out clearly what the consequences are if Adani do not follow them.’

 

“The Queensland and Federal Governments have repeatedly assured the public that Adani’s coal project has the strictest environmental conditions, but these conditions mean absolutely nothing if they fail to prevent serious environmental damage” 

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Gautam Adani wants a renewable future but still supports Carmichael Mine

In a blog published last week, Gautam Adani, chairman of the Adani Group, says that renewables are fast becoming the cheapest and best source of energy, especially for countries that currently rely on fossil fuel imports. 

He wrote “Today, as COVID19 challenges the fundamental assumptions of our lives, the urgency of a green revolution in the energy sector gains greater importance. While the immediate economic impact may slow us down, we are presented with an opportunity to pause, rethink, and design a new and faster transition to a low carbon future.”

“The adage that renewables are good for the environment, but bad for business is increasingly a thing of the past. Today, we see an accelerating trend where policies facilitated by governments, public awareness and support for action on climate change, and the economies of scale continue to create massive market demand and job creation through renewables while simultaneously addressing the energy security for countries dependent on energy imports.”

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Adani Water Grab

Stop Adani protesters17 January 2020 Shared from Radio 4MK
https://www.4mk.com.au/news/local-news/124030-adani-responds-to-claims-of-water-grab

Adani Responds To Claims of 'Water Grab'
By Michelle Brewer

Community opposition is growing against Adani’s plan to extract up to 12.5 billion litres per year from the Suttor River in central Queensland according to the Mackay Conservation Group.

The group said, "Hundreds of people have written to the Federal Minister Susan Ley objecting to the federal government’s handling of Adani’s water scheme".

In December the Mackay Conservation Group requested that supporters contact the federal member for environment Susan Ley and ask her to urgently review Adani’s application to extract 12.5 billion litres of fresh water annually from the Suttor River in central Queensland. in response, over 500 community letters have been sent to the minister’s electoral office over the last few weeks.

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Adani wants your money for its dirty mine

Adani is currently in private negotiations with the Queensland Government to secure a royalty holiday so they can afford to build their mega coal mine in the Galilee Basin. 

The deal could extend until the mine is profitable, which most financial analysts think it will never be. In documents disclosed under Freedom of Information laws, Queensland Treasury officials described the Adani mine as “unbankable”.  At stake is up to $700 million in royalties that should be used to fund Queensland’s firefighters, schools, hospitals and roads.

The government has set itself a deadline of November 30 to make a decision but Queenslanders may never know the details. Both Adani and the government are refusing to divulge information about the secret agreement, citing commercial in confidence.

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Adani is just the tip of the melting iceberg

Environmental organisations such as Mackay Conservation Group have focused on preventing the Adani mine from being constructed for several years. We have built a movement of two million people around the country who support organisations that are part of the Stop Adani alliance. That leads some people to wonder why we aren’t focussed on the other mines planned for the Galilee Basin and elsewhere.

In 2012 it appeared that the first cab off the rank would be the GVK-Hancock Alpha mine. It attracted a lot of attention from the environmental movement. That project hasn’t gone anywhere, while Adani has been eyeing off opportunities to open its mine with generous support from taxpayers including low-interest loans and special royalties deals.

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Adani and the Black Throated Finch

Adani’s Carmichael mine in the Galilee Basin, central Queensland is a long way from receiving all of the approvals it needs before it will be ready to break ground.

One of the key hurdles Adani needs to overcome is to have their management plan for the tiny Black Throated Finch (BTF) approved by the Queensland government.

Unfortunately for Adani and the BTF a substantial amount of the finch’s remaining habitat resides within the 28 000 hectare footprint of the Carmichael Mine.

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Adani job claims are only false hope

Adani has made many claims about the number of jobs its mine will generate. They have often said that the mine will create ten thousand jobs. Last year at a mining industry forum in Mackay it was claimed that 16,000 direct and indirect jobs would be created. Former prime minister, Malcolm Turnbull, spoke about “tens of thousands of jobs” flowing from the project while visiting Adani’s operations in India.

When asked to provide evidence under oath in court, Adani’s economic expert said that the project would create 1,464 direct and indirect jobs. That’s a big number but it's a long way short of the ten thousand touted in public by the company.

The biggest cloud hanging over jobs in the mining industry isn’t whether or not politicians support a single mining project. The major driver of declining employment in coal worldwide has been the desire of mining companies to maximise profits through automation. Every nation that produces coal has witnessed mechanisation drive employment lower, even when production increased.

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Our precious water

D6720474-E5E5-4CAC-929A-160C5E42CEF2.jpegToday is World Water Day and it’s worth taking a moment to think about what we can do to help improve access to this precious resource. The United Nations has a goal of “water for everyone by 2030”. Nobody should be left without ready access to safe, clean water. It’s a human right, yet billions of people, especially those with little political, social or economic clout are living without access to safe water.

www.mackayconservationgroup.org.au/WaterPetition

Australians are more aware of the need to be careful with water than people in any other developed country. We live on the driest inhabited continent on earth, so we know that water can run out, even in the biggest cities. It wasn’t very long ago that Brisbane faced a water crisis as dams dropped to extremely low levels. This month Sydney has had to turn on its desalination plant for the first time since it was completed in 2010 because dams have dropped to less than 60 per cent of capacity.

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Day of Action - Not One Drop for Adani

 

Our campaign to rescind Adani’s unfair and unsustainable water licenses is only two weeks old and has already received amazing media coverage, numerous campaign and market stallls are active,  hundreds of petition signitires have been gathered and new volunteers are joining the campaign everyday.

The Defend Our water campaign - Not One Drop for Adani 

With the election ready to be called at any time it is vital that we step up the pressure on our politicians and decision makers. That's why we are organising a weekend of action that will begin on World Water Day on the 22nd of March.

The Plan

On Friday the 22nd of March and the following weekend we will be hitting the streets in Mackay and region, visiting MP’s, holding street and market stalls, having conversations, writing letters and generally making the campaign as enormous, colourful, loud and proud as possible!

Register now to be part of the action!

Together we will send a powerful message. Defend Our Water- Not One Drop for Adani!

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