The Alpha Coal project test pit in June. The State Government has unveiled its development strategy for the new coal province.
The Alpha Coal project test pit in June. The State Government has unveiled its development strategy for the new coal province. Contributed

Environmentalists complain old mines not fixed up

ENVIRONMENTALISTS say mining companies are dodging their responsibilities when it comes to rehabilitating old mines.

An Environmental Justice Australia report outlines half a dozen things coal mining companies do to "avoid, minimise or delay" fixing the massive holes they leave behind.

EJA spokesman David Barnden said these "tricks" included mothballing mines so they never "officially" closed and running mines at a loss so governments ended up footing rehab bills.

"Coalminers in New South Wales and Queensland are obliged to clean up mines and arrange bank guarantees in case they go bankrupt," he said.

"However, companies take advantage of loopholes to delay cleaning up."

Queensland Resources Council acting chief executive Greg Lane said the industry was aware of its obligations.

"The industry more than recognises the importance of rehabilitation that meets community expectations, and that financial assurance should never be needed to be called in," he said.

"Queensland's environment laws are such that a series of escalating compliance measures would be enforced before financial assurance would even be considered."

The Minerals Council of Australia did not respond to ARM Newsdesk's request for comment.


Supermarket warning: Fruit, veggie prices soar 30%

Premium Content Supermarket warning: Fruit, veggie prices soar 30%

Fruit and vegetable prices to soar as farm labour crisis bites

Dad jailed 15 years for horrific rape of daughters

Premium Content Dad jailed 15 years for horrific rape of daughters

Kingaroy dad threatened to kill family if daughters spoke

NAMED: Case of man accused of child porn delayed

Premium Content NAMED: Case of man accused of child porn delayed

“This matter has been around in excess of 12-months..."