Parliament restored balance between the rights of farmers, miners, and the community, passing legislation that protects farm infrastructure and restores community objection rights.
Minister for State Development and Natural Resources and Mines Minister Dr Anthony Lynham told Parliament that the Mineral and Other Legislation Amendment Bill fulfilled two Queensland Government commitments to farmers and to community groups.
“The legislation passed fulfils the government’s commitments to restore community objection rights to proposed mining projects, and to protect key agricultural infrastructure,” Dr Lynham said.
“As per our commitments, we have re-established the right for anyone to object to a proposed mining project on broad grounds,” he said.
“Landholders will also have the right to say no to resource activities beside their key infrastructure.”
The legislation, passed, reinstates rights removed by the previous LNP Government, and also prevents provisions they put into place from taking effect.
It follows the Government’s move in July 2015 to restore community objection rights around large-scale mining projects assessed through the Coordinator-General.
Landholders will retain:
- a minimum 50 metre protection zone around key agricultural infrastructure such as principal stockyards, bores and artesian wells, dams and artificial water storages connected to a water supply
- the right to prevent any mining lease being granted over restricted land without the consent of the owner
- the security of knowing ministers cannot extinguish restricted status for their land – a power a minister would have had under the LNP’s proposed laws.
Community members will retain rights they would have lost under the LNP laws:
- to have their say on mining lease and environmental authority applicationsfor mining projects
- to be advised of any proposed mining projects through ads in newspapers.
Dr Lynham said the resource sector would benefit from the Queensland Land Court having a power to strike out any frivolous or vexatious objections.
The changes take effect on September 27 2016.