Federal Court throws out approval of Adani's Carmichael mine
A FEDERAL Court has overturned approval for the Camichael coal mine in central Queensland.
The mine's Federal Government approval, which was to be one of the biggest coal mines in the world, was found to have not considered two vulnerable reptile species - the yakka skink and the ornamental snake.
Mackay Conservation Group coordinator Ellen Roberts said Environment Minister Greg Hunt had rushed the approval process for the mine.
"It is astonishing and deeply troubling that it has taken a legal case by a small community group to bring the approval process under proper public scrutiny, and expose Minister Hunt's dereliction of duty in fast-tracking the mine," she said.
"The scale and impacts of this mine mean it would be the most damaging in
Australian history. The proponent, Adani, has flouted the law and recklessly destroyed the environment in India. In Australia, Carmichael would be the driver for the huge coal port the company plans to build on the Great Barrier Reef.
"Given that Minister Hunt also has carriage of the port approval, what faith can the community now have that he will act appropriately to protect the Reef?"
In a statement Adani said it was "regrettable that a technical error from the Federal Environment Department" lead to the court's decision.
"It should be noted the approval did include appropriate conditions to manage the species protection of the yakka skink and ornamental snake," the statement said.
"However, we have been advised that, because certain documents were not presented by the Department in finalising the approval, it created a technical legal vulnerability that is better to address now.
"Adani will await the Minister and his department's timely reconsideration of its approval application under the Commonwealth Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation (EPBC) Act.
"Adani is confident the conditions imposed on the existing approval are robust and appropriate once the technicality is addressed."
The price of a Federal Court overturning the Federal Government's approval of the Carmichael coal mine will be Queensland jobs, a lobby group has claimed.
Queensland Resources Council chief executive Michael Roche said the approval being overturned would cost jobs for central Queenslanders.
"It is preposterous that a technical administrative hitch could hold up billions of dollars in investment and thousands of desperately needed jobs," Mr Roche said.
"Adani's environmental approval did include conditions to manage the protection of the yakka skink and ornamental snake, however due to an administrative error by the Commonwealth Department of Environment, the approval has been set aside."
- APN NEWSDESK