Despite the State Government announcing on Monday that they were reducing the Galilee Basin Rail Corridor land area by 94 %, affected land owners in Central Queensland still have concerns over the how the combined 690km of rail line will affect their properties.
Speaking to the CQ News, Clermont land owner Shontae Moran, said she, along with other land owners were concerned that the State Government had stepped in to allow compulsory acquisition of land, ruling out negotiations with mine operators.
“The government basically sided with mining companies,” she said.
“It’s going to affect an even larger proportion of our property than we first thought,” Ms Moran said, “It will run 19km through our place, decrease our land value and increase the risk of fire and flooding.”
“We support development but it has to be done in the right place.
“Mining companies will lease the corridor for 30 years, but what happens when it gets washed out?”
Deputy Premier Jeff Seeney said the Government was working to address the concerns of land owners.
“We have listened and responded to landholder concerns by reducing the size of this development area by 94 per cent – making the final State Development Area less than one-tenth the size of the area originally proposed.
“And there will be further reductions to come. Currently the State Development Area is around 500 metres wide, however once more detailed rail line designs are finalised and approved by the Coordinator-General, the rail corridor will be reduced to about 60 to 100 metres wide.
Mr Seeney said now that the State Development Area had been declared, the State Government’s focus would be to ensure directly-affected landholders are treated fairly and with respect, and impacts on their day-to-day operations are minimised.
“It’s important landholders understand where there are property yards, watering facilities or other infrastructure within the State Development Area, proponents will be required to either pay compensation to the landowner or relocate that infrastructure to another part of the landholder’s property.
“I have said all along that while our government is excited about the 28,000 potential jobs and economic benefits that proposed Galilee Basin mines could deliver, we have a genuine commitment to ensure landholders rights are respected as these projects are developed,” he said.
“This State Development Area does not take away the rights of the 74 landholders within the corridors to directly negotiate with resource companies to minimise impacts on day-to-day management of livestock, placement of important infrastructure such as cattle yards, or the effective management of water flow.
“Resource companies will be subject to strict environmental conditions set by the Coordinator-General, which includes detailed flood conditioning.”
“We have told resource proponents they can access just two corridors totalling 690 kilometres – one from the southern and one from the central end of the Basin.
“This declaration delivers on our government’s commitment to properly plan in a coordinated way for the development of coal mines and associated infrastructure in the Galilee, while minimising potential impacts on land owners, regional communities and the environment.
“The State Development Area announced today covers 106,000 hectares and directly affects 74 landholders, far less than the 1.8 million hectares and 1400 landholders affected by the draft plan.
Landholders within the final State Development Area and those no longer affected will receive letters this week, including maps showing the location of the State Development Area.
This information is also available online at http://www.dsdip.qld.gov.au/