Tarkine mine on hold due to court ruling

Work has halted on a proposed iron ore mine in Tasmania’s fragile Tarkine region.
By AAP with AG staff May 22, 2013 Reading Time: < 1

WORK ON A CONTROVERSIAL mine in Tasmania’s Tarkine region remains in limbo following a hearing in the Federal Court.

Conservation groups have been protesting against a proposed iron ore mine at Nelson Bay River, in Tasmania’s north-west, due to the Tarkine region’s delicate ecosystem.

Tasmanian devils are among the species considered under threat from the proposed mine.

Injunction halts work at Tarkine mine

The Federal Court has extended a temporary injunction which halts work on the proposed mine. This will continue until the court decides whether an action by conservationist group Save The Tarkine is successful.

SEE A GALLERY OF IMAGES OF THE TARKINE REGION

Save The Tarkine is challenging federal Environment Minister Tony Burke’s approval of the mine, arguing it breaches the law by failing to protect endangered Tasmanian devils.

“We are pleased with the outcome of this morning’s hearing,” Save the Tarkine spokesman Scott Jordan says. “This is welcome respite for the survival of the Tasmanian devil.”

The Shree Minerals mine is the first of around 10 mines proposed in the region. The Government imposed 29 conditions on Shree Minerals upon approval of the mine, including a $48,000 ‘fine’ for each devil killed.

Tarkine devils under threat

Last week, Tasmania’s Environment Protection Authority enraged conservationists when it approved a Venture Minerals mine in the region. The Riley Creek mine is awaiting approval from Tony Burke.

The Tarkine, home to a population of healthy Tasmanian devils and one of the world’s largest temperate rainforests, is a source of great debate among environmentalists and Tasmanian locals.

The area also has a long mining history, and an Australian Workers Union sponsored pro-mining rally will be held in the town of Tullah on Saturday.

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