The Latest · Nature & the Reef

Media Release: Whitsunday residents take expansion of Adani's Abbot Point Terminal to court

24 June, 2016

Local community group, Whitsunday Residents Against Dumping, is asking the Queensland Supreme Court to scrutinise whether the Department of Environment properly considered legislative tests when granting authority for Adani’s Abbot Point Terminal 0 expansion.

The following statement is from our client Whitsunday Residents Against Dumping (WRAD):

Local community group, Whitsunday Residents Against Dumping, which aims to protect the Great Barrier Reef from damage, is asking the QLD Supreme Court to scrutinise whether the QLD Department of Environment properly considered legislative tests when granting authority for Adani’s controversial Abbot Point Terminal 0 expansion to go ahead.

The first directions hearing is taking place today in the Queensland Supreme Court.

Local grandmother, former tourism worker and spokesperson for Whitsunday Residents Against Dumping, Sandra Williams said, “Our precious Great Barrier Reef is already in poor health, and Adani’s controversial port project, which will cause irreparable damage, has raised significant concern in our community.

“Residents in our group have never taken legal action before, but we were forced to because of our worry that the approval of the port expansion, which will require damaging dredging and see hundreds of extra ships through the Reef each year, was not lawful.

“There is a question mark over whether the Department of Environment and Heritage Protection properly assessed the project, as required by law, before it gave this billion dollar proposal the green light.

“It is critically important that the decision, which has such grave implications for the Reef, is properly scrutinised.

“Both state and federal governments are allowing fossil fuel companies to expand the port, for a coal project that will decimate the Reef and its glorious corals, and threaten marine life, including endangered snubfin dolphins, turtles and giant manta rays.

“We should not have to take this project to court, but an independent review will help ensure proper scrutiny of the decision-making process.

“Our community group believes the law should be followed to the letter when permitting a project that will ship through our vulnerable Reef millions of tonnes of coal which, once burnt, will fuel climate change and cause continued coral bleaching events.

“We believe the approval was unlawful and, along with many thousands of Australians, feel that it is wrong to damage the glorious Great Barrier Reef to build a port for an unviable foreign owned coal mine that nobody needs,” Ms Williams said.

Environmental Defenders Office Queensland (EDO Qld) gives a strong legal voice to the environment when needed most.

Take Action

The latest from EDO Qld

Clean air and water - It's a human right

Factsheet: Understanding Defamation

Finally: New mine rehab and financial assurance laws passed in Qld

Natural justice: Time to get tough on environmental crime

Mine Rehab - Let's Get It Right