Bandanna could be biggest loser

AT a time when many Central Highlands landholders are celebrating the release of the Strategic Cropping Land framework policy, resource company Bandanna Energy face the threat of losing millions of dollars worth of proposed projects. On Tuesday, Environment Minister Kate Jones made history by announcing an Australian-first SCL policy framework that will protect chosen landholders from the grasp of the expanding resources boom. Unfortunately for Bandanna Energy, their two proposed projects within the Central Highlands protected boundary area are not far enough along in their development to escape the transitional arrangements set out in the upcoming legislation.

Bandanna Energy proposes to develop Arcturus coal mine, located about 40km south of Emerald and 60km south-west of Blackwater. But the operation, which would involve the function of an open cut and underground mine extracting five million tonnes per annum over a period of 30 years, is now under threat due to its locality to identified SCL and its stage of development.

On a recent tour of the Central Highlands, Queensland Resource Council CEO Michael Roche warned that $22 billion worth of mining projects were under threat due to the government’s proposed SCL legislation. Yesterday, he welcomed the government’s acknowledgement of the need for transitional arrangements, but expressed disappointment that not all projects were addressed.

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