News

Qld will report to Gillard Govt on plans for Abbot Pt upgrade

The Abbot Pt development would involve new shipping berths and dredging within the ports' precinct, adjacent to the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park.
The Abbot Pt development would involve new shipping berths and dredging within the ports' precinct, adjacent to the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park.

THE Queensland Government has called for proposals to develop a huge new expansion of the Abbot Point port, despite concerns raised earlier this year about the risks the port could pose to the Great Barrier Reef.

After abandoning the previous state government's proposals to further expand the port in May, Acting Premier Jeff Seeney called for expressions of interest in the development on Friday afternoon.

The development would involve new shipping berths and dredging among other infrastructure to be built within the ports' precinct, adjacent to the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park.

But the call for expressions of interest comes after the United Nations World Heritage Committee expressed concerns about any new developments within, or adjacent to the reef earlier this year.

The committee voiced its concerns after a mission to Australia, in a report which also rose concerns about any new port developments, outside existing port areas, in or adjacent to the World Heritage Area.

Mr Seeney said the coal export sector was critical to the state's economy and the infrastructure needed to be provided "in a timely and commercial basis to facilitate the expansion of this leading industry".

"In May 2012, the Newman Government decided to discontinue the process put in place by the previous government relating to prospective port and coal terminal development at Abbot Point," he said.

"Instead, the government began a review to look at clearing the way for the development of infrastructure, with a higher degree of certainty that additional export infrastructure would be delivered.

"This includes the objective that any future development is staged and closely aligned with emerging demand for port capacity."

The move to further develop the port was in part based on a report to government showing the emerging demand for additional port capacity.

But it also comes after Mr Seeney, as the Minister responsible for state development, removed coastal planning policy protections from the Department of Environment, putting the policy on hold.

Documents on the state government's website reveal it plans to report to the Australian Government on a strategic assessment of risks to the Great Barrier Reef before the end of this year.

But that report will not necessarily be made public at that stage, with the final report, including the state government and the marine park authority's views, to be included in a national report to the world heritage committee by February 1.

Topics:  abbot point, australian government, business, environment, great barrier reef, great barrier reef marine park, jeff seeney, port, queensland government



Flashback: A more romantic time when ballroom was king

Joan Gauldie

A new series sharing tales from Ipswich's older generation

Backpacker tax scrapped as changes bite on farmers

Rob Bauer of Bauer's Organic Farm. The farm has launched a paddock-to-plate online shop. Photo: LucyRC Photography

Region's farmers still unhappy with decision

Get ready to say goodbye to another Aussie icon

Say goodbye to the iconic Sunnyboy iceblock.

Nostalgic ice blocks will be sold no more

Local Partners

Nick 'the snake' to call the shots on Survivor jury

Australian Survivor contestant Nick Iadanza.

LATEST evictee is out of the game but will still have a say.

Naomi Watts and Liev Schreiber split

Naomi Watts and Liev Schreiber

Naomi Watts and Liev Schreiber have split after 11 years together.

Why Chris Hemsworth was spotted wearing nail polish

RED CARPET: Do you think Chris Hemsworth is the typical unpolished but well-natured Aussie bloke?

He's now officially the best bloke in Australia

Testament's new album is a concept album

ROME, ITALY- JULY 27, 2016: Testament photographed at The Roman Collisseium in Rome, Italy on July 27,2016. Gene Ambo

Testament to release new album

'Baby' recreates famous Nirvana cover shot 25 years later

The baby from Nevermind album has recreated the iconic cover shot.

PREVIEW: Luke Cage origin story is a strong addition to MCU

Mike Colter in a scene from the TV series Marvel's Luke Cage.

MIKE Colter stars as latest Marvel superhero to get his own series.

$40million hotel, shops development project for Mackay

Mt Pleasant hotel and retirement accommodation, proposed at 194-202 Malcomson St.

$40m development to take Mackay to 'the next level'

Housing report points to a lift in local market

AFFORDABLE HOMES: First home buyers have the opportunity to purchase modern new homes in the Ipswich region for under $400,000.

Region shaping up as the "final frontier” for affordable housing

Five ways to slash household bills and save the environment

THINK GREEN: Considering the environment when building or buying your next home can save you big dollars. The Village Building Company, who is responsible for Woodlinks Village at Collingwood Park, builds homes with this front of mind.

THERE is nothing as sweet as slashing dollars from your bills.

Investors out-bid first-home buyers in booming market

Housing generic.

Ipswich's housing market is putting more cash into sellers’ pockets

Another Ripley development

THE ENTRANCE: An overview of the last planned development for the fast growing Ripley area.

85 more home lots released

Property 200m from ocean selling for just over $100K

BEACHCOMBER PARK: Work has started on a new $19.2 million development at Toogoom.

The estate's developer is offering huge discounts for early buyers.