Dr Chris Rawlings, whose career in the resources sector spans 35 years, has been recognised for his significant contribution to the sector with the presentation of the prestigious Queensland Resources Council Medal.
Dr Rawlings was presented the medal by Premier Campbell Newman and newly-elected QRC President Rob Neale at the QRC’s annual lunch before a crowd of more than 800 people.
‘Dr Rawlings’ achievements have been wide ranging, from improvements in production methods, productivity and safety, to raising capital for multi-billion dollar projects,’ said QRC Chief Executive Michael Roche.
‘His intellect and significant contribution to Queensland’s minerals and energy sector is evident through his chairmanship of a number of resources companies including Queensland Energy Resources and Carbon Energy, D’Aguilar Gold Limited, Advanced Magnesium Corporation, Renison Consolidated Mines, Northern Energy Corporation, and UNIQUEST.’
Dr Rawlings said he was surprised and delighted to receive the award and paid tribute to people in the industry who had put their faith and trust in him.
In his acceptance speech Dr Rawlings acknowledged the recent support of the fossil fuel sector by Prime Minister Tony Abbott and Premier Campbell Newman.
‘In all my time in the resources industry I have never seen an Australian Prime Minister expend so much political capital in positively promoting coal as I did with Tony Abbott during conversations surrounding the G20,’ said Dr Rawlings.
‘I think we’ve seen that again here today with the Premier, where policies on the resources industry are put to the electorate just before an election and I congratulate him on it and so should we all..
‘Tony Abbott’s comments were done in in a scenario of increasing criticism from the anti-coal mining lobby, who, as they become more vociferous, become more distant from the facts.
‘He deserves not to be left standing alone.’
Dr Rawlings called on sector colleagues to more strongly promote the positive contribution that fossil fuels have brought to the world.
‘Let the critics prove their case,’ he said.
‘For those in the industry delivering fossil fuels to Australia and international customers, you are fulfilling a noble and moral role in bringing the world out of poverty and improving the economic circumstances for hundreds of millions of people. It has always been so.
‘One-point three billion people still do not have access to inexpensive and reliable electricity and no amount of promise by the renewable industry can fulfil this expectation alone.
‘Your opportunity and obligation is to provide the energy that makes the world a cleaner stronger and more vibrant community.’
Dr Rawlings is also a director of mining service provider JK Tech and a Fellow of the Australasian Institute of Mining and Metallurgy, the Geological Society of Australia and the Institute of Company Directors.
He is a former Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer of South Blackwater Coal and QCT Resources, and is a past president of the Queensland Mining Council, and director of a number of other resources companies
Dr Rawlings has a Bachelor of Science (Honours) in Geology and a PhD in Structural Geology and Rock Mechanics.