Tony Abbott and the Liberals are trying to take away the right of environmental and community groups to challenge mining approvals. They are planning to amend the EPBC Act (Environmental Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act) so the community can’t stand up for environmental protection.
Tony Abbott claims the Mackay Conservation Foundation engaged in “sabotage” by challenging the Environment Minister Greg Hunt’s decision to approve the Adani coal mine in the courts, and winning.
But the reaction to the loss can only be described as hysterical, because here are a few facts about the EPBC:
- Only 0.4% of projects have been affected by challenges from environmental or farmers groups.
- The law Tony Abbott wants to repeal was introduced under the Howard Government.
- The Howard Government introduced this law because – before it existed – only residents or property owners in the area directly affected could challenge major projects such as Adani.
- In the case of the Adani mine, Greg Hunt failed to consider the advice of his own department and as a result his approval of the Adani mine was set aside.
Labor won’t support weakening environmental protections or limiting a community’s right to challenge government decisions. It’s just another example of Tony Abbott trying to drag Australia back into the past at a cost to our future.
We simply don’t agree that it’s necessary to choose either jobs or the environment anymore. Smart growth and environmental protection can go hand in hand.
Thanks for your support,
Labor Digital Director
P.S. If you’ve got a friend who you think might like to know about what’s afoot, please forward them this email and if they want to stay up to date on Abbott’s attacks on the EPBC they can sign up for updates here: www.alp.org.au/stay_updated.