Qld Loss of further economic sectors is unacceptable

The Queensland Greens say that revelations that the Coordinator General had urged compensation for the loss of Gladstone fisheries is as big a betrayal of the Queensland people as the ALPs privatisation of public assets.

Queensland Greens state spokesperson Libby Connors was responding to the latest news reports on coal port and coal seam gas developments along the Queensland coast.

"At no stage were the Queensland people given a full account of the loss to other economic sectors posed by coal and gas development.

"The Greens have repeatedly warned that precious farmland and country towns were being lost and predicted that port developments would have harmful effects on fishing and tourism.

"Only now has it been reported that the Coordinator General accepted the loss of commercial fishing at Gladstone as the price to pay for further port development.

"These decisions go to the heart of Queenslands economy and society.

"Does this generation of Queenslanders want to abandon a sustainable economic future based on farming, fishing and tourism in favour of short-term CSG and coal?

Dr Connors said that the Greens also shared Great Barrier Reef Marine Park chairman, Russell Reichelts concerns about the eight-fold expansion of coal terminals at Abbot Point.

"We have repeatedly warned that this massive expansion would require dredging of coral.

"The GBRMP has highlighted the problem of pilotage through either a northern access route via Palm Island or the southern access route via Dalrymple Bay.

"This southern route tracks through the Whitsunday Islands group, a major tourist destination famous for its sailing and hosting of yachting regattas. It is hard to imagine a Queensland sea-channel less suited to heavy capesize tankers.

"We urgently need an economic impact assessment of these port developments so the real costs are clear to existing industries such as tourism and commercial fishing.

The Greens have been calling for a moratorium on coal seam gas development for more than a year. We have been really worried about the lack of a public health assessment for Darling Downs communities but the economic losses to coastal and rural communities also need urgent appraisal.

Further information contact Libby Connors