Vicki Perrin from Lock the Gate.
Vicki Perrin from Lock the Gate. Max Fleet

Last chance to sign petition against proposed coal mine

A PETITION against a coal mine planned to the north of Bundaberg will end tomorrow.

Coal mine opponents from the Lock the Gate Alliance, claim the coal mine, if approved, would destroy valuable country for sugarcane and macadamias, among other crops, and is on the Kolan River - a vital marine breeding ground for the Southern Great Barrier Reef.

Tegege farmer Diane Bush said the banks of the Kolan River were an utterly inappropriate place for a coal mine.

"This land is very suitable for agriculture, especially with the underground water aquifers which the mine could contaminate if it was built," she said.

"The world needs food much more than it needs coal."

Lock the Gate Wide Bay spokesperson Vicki Perrin said locals were committed to the fight against Fox Resources' proposal.

"People here have just seen off Blue Energy, who wanted to drill gas wells on this fertile country," she said.

"Fox Resources directors won't know what hit them if they proceed with plans for this ill-thought out and destructive coal mine.

"We are calling on this company to abandon plans to dig for coal in what is one of the most fertile food bowls in the country.

"We are also calling on the Queensland Government to reject the application given that our regional plan is incomplete and mapping of priority agricultural areas is not yet done.

"The regional plan needs to be set in stone to protect agricultural areas."

The inferred resource is more than 174 million tons according to Fox's ASX statement.

Previously, Fox Resources CFO Bruce Garlick told the NewsMail there was no immediate plans for a mine as numerous studies were required before a mining lease could even be considered.

"The Mineral Development Licence Application is an Exploration permit that is issued in order to evaluate the development potential of the resource (and) the term applied for is five years," Mr Garlick said.

"If the MDl is granted, the work program allows for geophysics in the first year, seismic surveys and drilling in year two to five.

"The Mineral Development Licence can be renewed for a further five-year term after the initial granted term of five years.

"An MDL is a type of exploration permit and not a mining lease (and) allows us to conduct geoscientific programs."

Mr Garlick said the study may include drilling, seismic surveys, mining feasibility studies, metallurgical testing, marketing, environmental, engineering and design studies.

If a mining lease was considered in the future, Mr Garlick said all relevant stakeholders would be consulted and negotiated with and the community would be consulted.

Mr Garlick said if a mining lease application was submitted, Fox Resources would employ local workers and contractors to ensure the community benefited.