Queensland cropping lands protected from mining
Queensland’s best agricultural land is now officially protected from mining under Strategic Cropping Land Act 2011.
Natural Resources Minister Rachel Nolan said the legislation strikes a balance between agriculture, mining and urban development.
“The Strategic Cropping Land Advisory Committee, which includes key resources, agricultural and urban development groups, will advise on implementation issues and contribute to the two-year review of the legislation,” Ms Nolan said.
“I will also work closely with the newly formed Science and Technical Implementation Committee to ensure that the soil science, integral to the legislation, is implemented to achieve the aim of the policy.
“Right across Australia we are seeing conflict between mining and agriculture and Queensland is the first government to act.
Ms Nolan said the Bligh Government had developed comprehensive legislation to scientifically identify the state's best quality agricultural land, protecting it from mining and other activities that would permanently alienate it.
“Coming into force today, this legislation means that our best land, notably but not only, on the Darling Downs, in the Lockyer Valley and in Central Queensland's golden triangle, will now be protected for agriculture forever. “
The Strategic Cropping Land Regulation 2011, which supports the Act, and the initiative’s State Planning Policy, which is designed to ensure local government planning and development assessments are considered under the Act, have also come into effect.
The Act, Regulation and State Planning Policy form a legislative and planning framework to protect strategic cropping land from resource and urban developments that lead to permanent impacts or diminished productivity.
Strategic cropping land applications can now be officially submitted to the Department of Environment and Resource Management (DERM).
More information is available on the DERM website at www.derm.qld.gov.au