Brisbane Region Environment Council
Preliminary Report on Intensive Chicken Farm - Minto Crags
March 30th 1999
Recently the Boonah Shire Council approved an application to set up two intensive chicken farms in the shire. The first is near Mt Alford and the second is near Minto Crags. These applications were approved as "Code Assessment" under the State Integrated Planning Act. There was no public notification or any fulsome assessment of the environmental impacts.
The Brisbane Region Environment Council (BREC) believes there are significant risks associated with these industries to groundwater and downstream wetlands. We believe that the current proposals will degrade the natural and amenity values of the Minto Crags areas.
The proposal will involve a substantial number of chickens we estimate at least 44,000 birds. This number will generate considerable liquid and solid wastes. It will generate a significant odour and has the risk of spreading airborne contaminants to adjoining properties.
A significant regional wetlands is within 5km of both the Mt Alford and Minto Crags sites. This poses a considerable disease risk to both the native wildfowl and the chickens. The releases of liquid wastes with elevated nutrient levels and other contaminants will have an adverse impact on this wetland.
The solid and liquid wastes have a strong probability of finding their way into local groundwater supplies. This will degrade the quality of that water. Groundwater pollution is almost impossible to fix once it has occurred.
The source of water for the proposal have not been specified, will they be drawing groundwater and how much?
There will be anywhere from 4600 to 9200 chickens incinerated per year, what are the pollution impacts of this activity and how far will it spread?
What will happen to the solid wastes, around 11 tonnes per day, from the site and where will they be disposed?
BREC would need to see the details of any proposed wastewater plant and storm-water management plan before construction commences.
BREC would encourage the SEQWB to take an active interest in the adverse impacts of this sort of development on downstream water storages.
Intensive chicken farming is not a clean green industry and should be considered inappropriate in such an area of outstanding and valuable natural features.