Skip to main content

Australian conservation group knocks Queensland Supreme Court against Adanis' $16 billion coalmining project

By Our Representative
In a surprise move, an Australian conservation group, Coast and Country, has announced it has filed an appeal to the Supreme Court of the Queensland province for a judicial review of the environmental clearance granted to India’s powerful Adani Group’s $16 billion Carmichael coalmining project, proposed to be implemented in the Galilee Basin.
The Queensland Department of Environment and Heritage Protection gave a go ahead to one of the world’s biggest coalmining projects, handed over to the Adanis, on February 2, following which the indigenous groups – which were earlier opposing the project – heavily voted in its favour.
“Coast and Country has taken this step because the department failed in its obligations under the Environmental Protection Act to consider ecologically sustainable development”, said Derec Davies of Coast and Country.
Terming the ecologically sustainable development principle the local community’s “safety net”, Davies said, the conservation organization thinks of it “as an overarching filter used to assess a proposed development’s environmental harm against its purported benefits.”
“Our appeal to the Supreme Court is simple. We have laws to protect the environment that we rely on for our food, clean water, and the air we breathe; and that supports our unique biodiversity”, he added.
“In our opinion”, Davies further said, “The Queensland Department of Environment and Heritage Protection has made an error of law. The department cannot just ignore those laws and allow the big end of town to develop a huge, polluting coal mine that will create catastrophic environmental harm both now and into the future”.
Calling the Queensland government’s decision to approve the mine as “flawed”, Davies said, “It requires the scrutiny of a court of review. In its February decision, it ignored climate change totally, and failed to properly take account of the true jobs figures, 1464 net jobs not the 10,000 advocated.”
“What is most concerning is the fact that it failed to properly consider and apply the legislation under which it operates”, he added.
“The requirement to consider ecologically sustainable development is nothing new. All developments approved under the Environmental Protection Act must be scrutinized using this principle since 1994. This principle is the community’s safety net”, Davies insisted.
“It ensures proposed projects meet a core set of criteria designed to protect ecological processes essential to life, and it is agreed to by the Australian Government as set by the United Nations”, he said.
“Although not apart of our appeal, right now, we are in the middle of a horrific coral bleaching event on the Great Barrier Reef, driven by global warming”, the conservation group said, adding, “The coal from the Carmichael mine will generate 4.7 billion tonnes of carbon pollution during its lifetime.”
“This pollution will cause our oceans to acidify and warm further, potentially destroying our precious reef”, it said, adding, “Our case, and our resolve on this matter, is clear. The law is the law”.
Coast and Country is represented by lawyers from the Environmental Defenders Office Queensland, an independent non-profit community legal centre specialising in public interest environmental law.

Comments

Peter said…
Quite right: every site specific decision must consider the precautionary principle and intergenerational equity.
Suggest RTI EHP for Assessment Report

TRENDING

Call to support IIM-Bangalore professor, censured for seeking action against Uniliver

Counterview Desk
Sections of the Indian Institute of Managements (IIMs) across India have strongly reacted to the decision to censure Dr Deepak Malghan, a faulty at IIM-Bangalore. Prabhir Vishnu Poruthiyil, who is faculty at IIM-Tiruchirapalli, has sought wider solidarity with Dr Malghan, saying, "The administration has censured Deepak for merely suggesting a meaningful action against Hindustan Unilever for their abysmal environmental record" by “disinviting” it for campus placement.

Actionable programme for 2019 polls amidst lynch mobs, caste violence, hate mongering

Counterview Desk
Reclaiming the Republic, a civil rights network, has released a document prepared under the chairmanship of Justice AP Shah (retired) -- and backed, among others, by Supreme Court advocate Prashant Bhushan, bureaucrat-turned-human rights activist Harsh Mander, economist Prabhat Patnaik, Right to transparency activist Anjali Bhardwaj and social scientist Yogendra Yadav  (click HERE for full list) -- with the "aim" of putting forth policy and legislative reforms needed to “protect” and “strengthen” the Constitutional safeguards for India’s democratic polity.

Noam Chomsky, top scholars ask NRIs to take stand on human rights violations in India

Counterview Desk
Renowned world scholars, including Noam Chomsky, James Petras, Angela Davis, Fredric Jameson, Bruno Latour, Ilan Pappe, Judith Butler, among others, have issued a statement castigating the Narendra Modi government for allegedly creating an environment of fear through arrests, intimidation and violence.

India under Modi "promoted" crony business, protected financial fraudsters, fueled bigotry

By Sandeep* and Rahul Pandey**
Narendra Modi's ascension to power was accompanied with jubilation and expectation. His supporters were expecting an end to era of corruption and initiation of good governance which was described as Achche Din. His party's adherence to idea of nationalism was believed to make India a vibrant country and guide India to be a world leader. He gave the slogan of 'Sabka Saath, Sabka Vikas' conveying that his government was for all.
Corruption The government system is infested with corruption. A minimum of 10% is siphoned off from government schemes and projects, some of which goes back to political party in power and remaining is pocketed by various administrative, executive and political functionaries. This corruption continues and has increased. Now an additional Rashtriya Swayamsewak Sangh (RSS) person working as Official on Special Duty or some equivalent position in every government department also has a share in this booty.
The Narendra M…

Inviting Rajapaksa to India "insult" to 1,40,000 Tamils killed by Sri Lankan army

Counterview Desk
In the context of Sri Lankan opposition leader Mahinda Rajapaksa being invited in India, about 75 human rights activists*, claiming to be concerned about rights violations during the civil war in Sri Lanka, especially in 2009, have joined together to express their dissent through a statement.

A Godse legacy? BJP rulers have "refrained" from calling Gandhi Father of the Nation

By Dr Hari Desai*
What an agony! On one hand, the entire India is celebrating the 150th birth anniversary of Mahatma Gandhi under the leadership of Prime Minister Narendra Modi, but on the other side, so-called Hindu Mahasabha members have been found mock-enacting the killing of the Mahatma and celebrating the murder by distributing sweets!

No aadhaar, no ration? Hard blow by Gujarat govt on poor and marginalized

By Pankti Jog*
Only those who have aadhaar registration and linked it with ration card will get ration from a Public Distribution System (PDS) shop. This decision of the Gujarat government has hit very badly thousands of poor and marginalized communities of Gujarat, especially during the drought year.

Post-advisory, Govt of India appears reluctant to ban e-cigarettes, "harmful" to kids

By Rajiv Shah
Is the Government of India dilly-dallying over the issue of banning e-cigarettes, which have been declared by anti-tobacco activists across the world as providing “an entryway to nicotine addiction”, especially among the kids? It would seem so, if the latest developments are any guide.

Poser to Modi: Why is Gujarat not fulfilling Constitutional obligations to minorities?

Counterview Desk
In an open letter, Mujahid Nafees, convener, Minority Coordination Committee (MCC), a Gujarat-based civil rights organization, has accused Prime Minister Narendra Modi on infringing upon MCC activists’ constitutional right to protest. Nafees says, they had no other demands except that the Gujarat government should move towards fulfilling the constitutional obligations towards minorities and international treaties to which India is a signatory.

World Bank needs a new perspective on development, not just a new president

By Maju Varghese*
The resignation of the World Bank President Jim Yong Kim was an unexpected development given the fact that he had three more years to complete his tenure. Resignations at such a high level after bidding for a second term is unusual which prompts people to think what would have led to the act itself.