Debate continues over mine in Qld's food bowl
A CAMPAIGN has received community support in a bid to protect the region's environment.
Bundaberg Protectors Group started the GoFundMe campaign seeking financial contributions, to fund billboards that contest building a coal mine in the region.
In just over a week, the campaign has almost raised $2000.
Organiser Penny Taylor said the success of the campaign so far was testament to Bundaberg's community spirit.
"Locals here totally oppose plans for a destructive coal mine in our backyard," Ms Taylor said.
"They know that if this mine goes ahead, it would wreck one of the most productive food bowls in the nation, and have a disastrous impact on the Kolan River, a nursery for the Southern Great Barrier Reef.
"It would also have a negative impact on our lifestyle, and ruin Bundaberg's reputation as a clean, healthy place to live."
Ms Taylor said the billboards would be placed in visible areas to raise awareness and to demonstrate the number of residents opposed by the idea of a coal mine.
"The fact Fox Resources has been able to apply to mine such a sensitive and important area is an example of how the Palaszczuk Government is failing to protect prime agricultural land and sensitive ecosystems," she said.
"The regional planning act must be amended to fully protect high quality farmland from invasive coal and gas mining."
Minister for natural resources, mines and energy Dr Anthony Lynham said a mineral development licence does not allow any activity that could affect farming or the local aquifers.
"The current application, if granted allows studies, surveys and other exploration activities - not mining," Dr Lynham said.
"In fact, I am concerned that highly inaccurate claims are being made that may cause unnecessary concern within the local community.
"Thanks to Labor, Queensland's mining and environmental laws ensure any resources project has to stack up environmentally and in the interests of the public.
"Queensland now has some of the most transparent and rigorous assessment processes for mining projects in the world.""Member for Burnett Stephen Bennett said Dr Lynham's words were disingenuous. "He begins by trying to assure locals that an MDL will not impact farming activities but concludes by saying it still could progress to a mine," he said. "I invite the Minister or any member of the (State) Government to come to Bundaberg and reassure residents that there won't be mining activities in North Bundaberg. "If the Minister wants to talk about rights, I suggest he starts by listening to over five thousand people who signed this petition and their right to voice their concerns." Dr Lynham will respond to a petition before the Parliament today. The NewsMail attempted to contact Fox Resources for a comment yesterday, but did not receive a response.