Federal Government approval of the Abbot Point expansion project is “great news for Queensland”, Senator Matt Canavan said today.
“I am a strong supporter of the Galilee Basin coal projects and the related expansion of the Abbot Point coal terminal,” Senator Canavan said today. “These projects will boost employment and economic development, especially here in Central Queensland and further north.
“Today’s Commonwealth approval of the State Government plan to expand the port is an important step towards seeing these projects come to fruition. It’s great news for Queensland.”
Senator Canavan said the Queensland Department of State Development had submitted a final Environmental Impact Statement addressing all relevant concerns raised through the public consultation process, triggering the period for final consideration under national environmental law, and the project had now been approved.
“The approved dredging has been reduced by 97 per cent from the original dredging proposal and all dredge material will be placed onshore on existing industrial land. No dredge material will be placed in the World Heritage Area or the Caley Valley Wetlands.
“It is important to remember this port area is at least 20 kilometres from any coral reef and no coral reef will be impacted. This work poses no threat whatsoever to the Great Barrier Reef but it does promise more jobs in regional Queensland.”
Senator Canavan said he was disappointed that environmental activists continued to oppose the Galilee Basin and Abbot Point projects.
“Activists have shown they will continue to use whatever means they can to throw roadblocks in front of these job-creating projects, including ‘lawfare’ cases in our courts as part of a strategy to delay and disrupt new coal projects.
“This campaign is based on a philosophical opposition to coal mining and aims to end all coal exports from Australia.
“I believe the vast majority of Queenslanders are losing patience with these activists, especially those many Queenslanders looking for mining-related jobs for themselves and their kids in the years ahead.”