Abbot Point puts Bowen back on track

AFTER 18 months of uncertainty, the Bowen community may finally have something to celebrate with yesterday’s announcement by federal Environment Minister Greg Hunt approving development of the Adani T0 project and capital dredging at the Abbot Point coal terminal.

Minister Hunt also issued approval for the Arrow LNG facility on Curtis Island near Gladstone and associated gas transmission pipeline.

Welcoming the announcements, Queensland Resources Council Chief Executive Michael Roche congratulated Minister Hunt for using the weight of scientific evidence to put Queenslanders ahead of increasingly hysterical environmental activists.

"The staged dredging of a commercial trading port 40 kilometres from the Great Barrier Reef has been painted by fossil fuel opponents as the end of a global icon," Mr Roche said.

"Minister Hunt’s decision confirms what we have known for the past 38 years of industry co-existence with the reef. We have the wherewithal in Australia to protect world heritage and environmental values because we have a standard of living that affords us such choices.

"The trading ports working alongside the Great Barrier Reef are responsible for the export of commodities worth $40 billion a year to the Australian economy.

"North Queenslanders are also looking to them to play a bigger role in supporting inbound tourism, particularly the cruise ship industry.

"The alternative proposal from environmental activists is to shut down shipping along 80 percent of the eastern Queensland coastline, effectively hanging almost one million people out to dry.

"The conditions set out today for both projects by Minister Hunt show the federal government is serious about protecting the outstanding universal values of the Great Barrier Reef and he can be assured of the continuing cooperation of industry stakeholders of meeting environmental and community expectations," Mr Roche said.



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