Fu­ture con­cern

Whitsunday Times - - WHITSUNDAY VIEWS -

DID you know that Bowen re­gion is the largest sup­plier of win­ter veg­eta­bles in Aus­tralia? The re­gion boasts 10,000 hectares and 3500 em­ploy­ees, with $450 mil­lion of pro­duce go­ing out from the area each sea­son. These fig­ures are quoted from Carl Walker, pres­i­dent of the Bowen Gumlu Grow­ers As­so­ci­a­tion, "Bowen In­de­pen­dent", 14/08/2012.

Many of these long term jobs, people's liveli­hoods and fer­tile lands owned by Aus­tralian farm­ers could be im­pacted by pol­lu­tion and/or be com­pul­sory ac­quired by our own govern­ment for the for­eign owned coal com­pa­nies' rail lines within the Galilee Basin State De­vel­op­ment Area.

This State De­vel­op­ment Area con­sists of 18,000 sq kms, af­fects 150 landowner prop­er­ties along its length and is now the largest land grab in the his­tory of Euro­pean set­tle­ment in this coun­try.

It's the stark re­al­ity that many never saw com­ing here and is one of the very ugly faces of the coal in­dus­try es­tab­lished at Ab­bot Point.

It is well truly time to stop la­belling any­one as be­ing "ex­treme green alarmists" sim­ply be­cause they dare to speak up with their valid con­cerns and doubts re­gard­ing mas­sive coal projects. It's time to lis­ten to what is ac­tu­ally be­ing said, be­come in­formed and do some­thing about it. The Bowen re­gion has far too much to lose with coal in so many ways.

Maria Macdon­ald BOWEN

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