Water Fur­phys

Whitsunday Times - - YOUR SAY -

DUR­ING the Qld Govern­ment’s com­mu­nity fo­rum at Can­non­vale last week, Min­is­ter Lyn­ham made sev­eral public com­ments that are open to scru­tiny.

Min­is­ter Lyn­ham has con­sis­tently un­der­played the po­ten­tial im­pact of the un­lim­ited vol­ume of free un­der­ground water that Adani is li­censed to ex­tract from the Great Arte­sian Basin

He com­pares Adani’s ex­pected take of 4.7 gi­gal­itres per year to the water use of a Bur­dekin cane farm.

Cane grows only in high rain­fall ar­eas and it needs a lot of water.

Bur­dekin cane farms do not use water from the Great Arte­sian Basin. An an­nual take by Adani of 4.7 gi­gal­itres per year is more than 270 gi­gal­itres over the sixty year life of the mine, which is a vol­ume about half that of Syd­ney har­bour.

The Min­is­ter con­fused the au­di­ence and the other politi­cians, by say­ing that Adani has paid $20 mil­lion for a sur­face water li­cence and ques­tioned why they would do this if they have so much free water from the Great Arte­sian Basin.

It’s a good ques­tion.

The answer is that the water ex­tracted from mine pits will be so con­tam­i­nated with tox­ins from the coal, that it will re­quire sig­nif­i­cant and ex­pen­sive treat­ment to be suit­able for any­thing, and still not as potable water. The $20 mil­lion for sur­face water is for use in the of­fice and work­ers camp, and is prob­a­bly a cheap op­tion by com­par­i­son.

The Adani mine re­mains a

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