Felton Valley farmer Frank Mengel and members of Friends of Felton protest over the sighting of an Ambre Energy drill rig in the area.
Felton Valley farmer Frank Mengel and members of Friends of Felton protest over the sighting of an Ambre Energy drill rig in the area. Bev Lacey

Driller snubs LNP pledge to Felton

FRIENDS of Felton members are outraged after an Ambre Energy drill rig was seen working on a property 5km south of the Felton Hall.

The rig was spotted less than one week after Premier Campbell Newman announced there would be no mining in the Felton Valley.

The announcement was thought to have all but ended Ambre's hopes of establishing an open-cut coalmine and petrochemical plant in the area.

But the arrival of the rig has renewed fears the company will push ahead with its plans.

About 50 Friends of Felton members gathered this week to protest outside the property where the drill rig was noticed. Group president Ian Whan said Ambre was flouting the LNP's decision.

"They might not be breaking the law at this precise moment, but they are acting in contempt of government policy," he said.

"If anything, this seems to be an attack on our democracy.

An Ambre Energy spokesman said the company had not received formal notification from the State Government about any legislative changes that might affect the project.

Member for Condamine Ray Hopper told The Chronicle last week Deputy Premier Jeff Seeney had contacted Ambre to tell it the Felton project would not go ahead.

Ambre's spokesman said the company had certain legal obligations to explore within its coal tenements.

"Activity will continue as long as the company is legally required to conduct exploration," he said.

"Ambre believes the Felton project presents an important economic opportunity for Queensland in the longer term. However, the project is a relatively immaterial contributor to the Ambre Group's current overall value proposition as it approaches an ASX listing.

"The company remains highly focused on the continued development of its integrated mine-to-market suite of coal mine and port assets in the United States."



Revamped CBD precinct reaches new milestone

Premium Content Revamped CBD precinct reaches new milestone

See inside Ipswich’s new council chambers and administration building. SEE THE...

Make sure you are ready to stick with the QT

Make sure you are ready to stick with the QT

The QT is set to take another significant step in its 170-year history of reporting...

Revealed: 70 Qld private schools hit with major funding cuts

Premium Content Revealed: 70 Qld private schools hit with major funding cuts

Dozens of Queensland private schools are soon to be hit