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April 8, 2000


The Department of Mines and Energy(DME) has pulled all non industry stakeholder and public participation in the development of the Draft State Planning Policy on extractives industry. Last month there was an attempt to take these industries off the referral coordination and impact assessment list of IPA. Now the DME is refusing to discuss its draft policy with local councils, environment, rural industry and indigenous groups. Extractive industries have had enormous impacts on the environment and this a classic attempt to have a closed door bureacrats only fast track process. Other departments can sucessfully write legislation and policies fully involving stakeholders at all stages. Nothing in IPA precludes involving stakeholders earlier in the process in addition to wider consultation.

The DME already aknowledges that is has already written 70% of the Draft SPP and is in negotiations to secure key resource areas. This proposed shut down of stakeholder involvement on such a contentious issue to some bare legislative minimum, some time in the future after the deals are already signed off on, is disturbing. There are plans to mine the Northern banks of Moreton Bay and offstream resources in the Brisbane Valley for sand and establish "super quarries" for rock. This will be done to supply up to one billion tonnes of material over the next 40 years in SEQ. The impacts of a badly drafted extractives policy will be felt by every coastal catchment in Queensland.

What sort of future resources will we be leaving for the people of Brisbane in 2100. What state will our rivers and bays be in ? Rather than spending much effort dealing with environmental, cultural heritage problems and wise use of resources the DME is racing ahead to finish is secret writing of Extractives policy . This will of course lock in the resource base and profits of its industrial backers and underwrite the housing industries continuing attack on native vegetation and wetlands in Queensland.

Write to Tony McGrady, Jim Elder and Terry Mackenroth and ask why stakeholders cant see exposure drafts of this proposed SPP and associated consultation material prior to more fulsome public consultation.

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