Mining

Hands Across the Sand: Semaphore, May 19

Let’s join together at Semaphore beach, to celebrate our coasts and oceans and send a message to say no to risky and dirty deep sea drilling in the Great Australian Bight and yes to a clean energy future.

Our climate is being pushed beyond it’s bounds – it’s up to us to stand together and demonstrate that a safe and healthy environmental future is the only outcome we will settle for.

You can help us to create a symbolic barrier along the shore to call for the protection of the unique and pristine Great Australian Bight.
Email sa.info@wilderness.org.au for more information

Help us by posting your photos from Hands Across the Sand on social media and tag @Great Australian Bight Alliance plus use hashtags#JoinHANDS #fightfortheBight #underwaterwilderness #unitetheBight

As we want to leave as smaller footprint as possible, please consider catching public transport or riding along the beautiful beach-side shared bike path.… Read more >>

Concern over gas exploration in the SE

As you may be aware, a number of residents in the South East have concerns regarding any mining or petroleum activities, particularly with large swaths of exploration licences over their properties.  The most concerning area is water security.  When there are droughts, the South East residents are fully dependent on the groundwater.  Health concerns, keeping the South East’s world renowned  clean and green image for export growth, and impacts on the economy are other concerns.  2015 – 2016, the value of agriculture in the SE, was  $3.2 billion, which was 51% of the total gross value of agricultural production in SA.
The geology and hydrology, including limestone, cavernous systems, and fault lines are not suitable for any drilling or mining and petroleum activities, apart from extractive mining for road and building materials.  With both mining and petroleum activities, there are risks to the groundwater, soil and air, through loss of well integrity, any dewatering of the aquifers, waste water disposal from gas or oil activities and no suitable way for safe disposal, contamination from tailing and benefication ponds for mining, salt impacts and landscape changes. Emissions and waste water ponds may impact bird life.  There has been a shocking disaster in Canada, where 7500 song birds flew into a gas flare at a gas processing plant and died.  http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/new-brunswick/7-500-songbirds-killed-at-canaport-gas-plant-in-saint-john-1.1857615
All gas needs flaring. I understand, if there is viable amounts of gas, the Katnook Gas Plant will be upgraded. In other places, including Australia,  my colleagues have told me that there have been a number of animal and bird deaths that may have died through road kill and extra traffic on the roads, and also through drinking water from the contaminated waste water ponds.
I would like these concerns to be on the agenda in the South Australian Parliament, after the election.  
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Adani Plans take another hit

The prospects of the mega coal mine and rail project planned for Queensland’s Galilee Basin by Indian giant Adani have taken a fresh hit, after listed Australian freight company Aurizon said it was no longer seeking federal funding to build the project’s rail line.

Aurizon said on Friday that it would be withdrawing its application for funding under Northern Australia Infrastructure Facility, or NAIF, due to a failure to secure “definitive contractual arrangements with any proponent.”

— Sophie Vorrath, writing for reneweconomy Feb 9th

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Social + community licence to operate is a real issue for the mining industry in Australia – BHP opposes changes to DGR regulations

“We do not support changes that limit public advocacy to 10 percent of funds, or requirements to spend 25 percent of funds on environmental remediation.”

Having already rocked the mining industry’s peak lobby, BHP’s determined pursuit of an independent public affairs course in the name of renewing and enhancing corporate social licence has now triggered angry resentment within some powerful pockets of the federal government.

 

The fulcrum of this latest bout of BHP-fuelled anxiety is a letter from the company to a small community of charity organisations in the middle of October and that followed a meeting between management and the lobbies in late September.

In its letter, dated October 16 and written by sustainability and public affairs officer, Tony Cudmore, BHP reiterates that it is actively reviewing membership of the Minerals Council of Australia and other industry lobby memberships and then goes on to announce management’s opposition to flagged government reforms to the tax status of charitable organisations in Australia.

Cudmore opened the October communiqué by restating the breadth and intent of the already-flagged internal review of its associations and its determination to advertise points of policy difference between the company and its lobbies.

“In relation to the MCA, as you are aware we have committed to complete our review of industry association memberships by December 31 this year, including the MCA, and we will make outcomes of that review public,” he said. “This will include a list of any material differences on climate and energy policy.”

The letter was sent following a September meeting with the leadership of four community organisations, two of them leading environmental protection lobbies (the World Wildlife Fund and the Australian Conservation Foundation) and two peak councils (the Australian Council for International Development and the Community Council for Australia).

The meeting was held three days after the abrupt resignation of MCA chief executive Brendan Pearson.… Read more >>