Queensland to Ban Uranium Mining 6

Monday, March 16th, 2015
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The reintroduction of a ban on uranium mining in Queensland will stifle jobs growth in the state’s northwest, the resources sector says.

The Palaszczuk government has confirmed it will once again prohibit the mining of uranium after the Liberal National Party (LNP) had lifted the decades-old ban.

Uranium mining was prohibited in Queensland in 1989 but hasn’t taken place since 1982, when the Mary Kathleen mine near Mount Isa ceased production.

Former mines minister Andrew Cripps had said the renewed industry would be subject to a robust framework to ensure future mines met world-best environmental protection and safety standards.

The ban, imposed by Labor in the 1980s, was “purely ideological” and it was time for the state to reap the benefits of its reserves, he had said.

But companies will still be allowed to apply for generic exploration permits despite the ban’s reintroduction, Labor natural resources minister Dr Anthony Lynham says.

The move was disappointing but not surprising, the Queensland Resources Council said.

“Rather than a blanket ban, the better option would be to judge each project on its merits and against the regulatory framework for uranium,” CEO Michael Roche said.

“Reimposition of a blanket ban on uranium mining will come as a particular disappointment to the people of northwest Queensland, who rightly see uranium mining as a valuable new jobs generator for the region.”

Mr Roche urged the government to consider allowing uranium projects only in the northwest of the state, where the more valuable deposits are located.

Uranium was set to be exported through existing licensed ports in Darwin and South Australia.

There are no ports in Queensland licensed for the export of uranium.

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  1. Ezio Viti

    Any unilateral ban on any development project, such as uranium mining, is a short sighted reaction made purely for political gain. I even doubt they can claim ideological grounds for their decision. Lets face it, it's pithy. They won the election so why don't they get on with it but no. The new government wants to be seen to be doing something…..anything!
    When will modern state and federal governments in this country get on with managing the economy by generating real job growth in industries that will improve our balance of payments.
    I can't resist the sarcasm but as a voter I have never felt more helpless.
    It strikes me very clearly that very few politicians, least of all the leaders and senior members of the respective parties have any idea on how to grow this country.
    It's quite exasperating.

    • Kent Smith

      I wish I could disagree but I am in total support. It appears we need a leader or a better political system that works for the betterment of a country and its people not just about being re-elected. What is the answer?

  2. Brendan Davies

    What if any legal ramifications are there against governments who continue to make knee jerk reaction decisions that affect so many. One minute we're all "full steam ahead" and next change of government impacted by a vocal MINORITY, change the laws without any education or understanding about who or what they impact. Companies get the "green light", spend countless hours chasing investors, planning, scheduling, procurement, etc etc and then it all falls in a heap. What about the "Mum & Dad" investors who throw hard earned money at this industry to watch it all turn to crap as some left wing, greenie, "know-nothing" idiot, deletes their investment. If governments want energy alternatives, then surely nuclear in our country is the way to go. We continue to improve and learn – that's our way. Get over 1945, Woomera, Bikini Atoll, Chernobyl and Fukushima – lets move forward and let those who DO KNOW, get on with it!!

    • Ezio Viti

      Brendan, it's like the mess the new Victorian government has got itself into regarding the EastWest link through the last minute ad hoc arrangement the former government made with the contractors to ensure scrapping the project (even before the finance draw-down commenced) would be painful to the tax payer.
      In short pollies are simply not accountable. Otherwise they would need to think before they leapt.

  3. Brendan Davies

    Exactly – another good example. How do we stop this nonsense? It will take deep pockets and a lot of lost & wasted time – which is what they rely on I'm sure. It's not as easy as "voting them out" anymore as they're all in it for themselves!! Needs to be a mandate on accountability. I also sent my thoughts to the Qld Resources Council re: Uranium issue; they're at least providing good sound support for the Operator and businesses – we really need these groups to maintain some semblance of common sense and balance.

  4. Steve Wells

    As an observer from WA, I can only endorse all of the previous comments, as the backtracking shown by the elected officials is monumentally perverse. I would be better able to understand their course of action if they had a ready to go replacement, that would allow a similar level of economic benefit. Bearing in mind that the specific investors in uranium projects in QLD would still get burnt, but at least there would be some alternative project offered that would be growing a shrinking economy.
    Perhaps making koalas, crocodiles and coral even more tourist friendly has their undivided attention.