Adani could be ‘ice-breaker’ for six more proposed Galilee Basin mines, resources body says – by Jemima Burt (Australian Broadcasting Corporation – June 11, 2019)

A decision on the Adani groundwater management plan is set down for tomorrow with environmentalists saying if the Queensland Government gives the green light it will set a precedent for six other mines also planned for the region and allow Adani to break ground within weeks.

The Queensland Resources Council (QRC) said the other projects would have a “much easier run” if the rail line was already established and the environmental approvals had been cleared. QRC chief executive Ian Macfarlane said Adani was “actually the ice-breaker that will lay down those baselines and will provide the infrastructure”.

“What’s going to happen with the groundwater application and its potential approval is that any further applicants will have not only the infrastructure to get the coal out because the railway line will be there,” he said.

“They’ll also have a baseline of where they can work from in terms of both the black-throated finch, the groundwater and then thirdly, the general environmental conditions they have to adhere to as part of opening a new basin.

“The first proponent always has the most difficult run.” In a statement, a Department of Environment and Science spokesperson said each mining application was subject to “a rigorous assessment”. “The approval, or otherwise, of one mine does not necessarily impact on the approval, or otherwise, of others,” the spokesperson said.

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