QRC: WHC concerns over Abbot Point approval 'inaccurate'

THE Queensland Resources Council has told a Senate inquiry on the Great Barrier Reef the World Heritage Committee's concerns about recent approvals at Abbot Point and Gladstone Harbour were "inaccurate".

A submission from the state's resources industry to the inquiry comes as the inquiry prepares for hearings later this month, despite a delay to the release of other submissions.

The QRC has welcomed the WHC's draft decision, not to list the reef as a World Heritage site in danger, but claimed references to approvals in Gladstone were "inaccurate and inappropriate".

The committee was concerned about the approval to dump three million cubic metres of dredge spoil in the marine park at Abbot Point, and the approval of a fourth LNG facility on World Heritage-listed Curtis Island.

It was the approval of the previous LNG facilities on Curtis Island, and a failure to notify the committee of those approvals that originally sparked international concerns in 2011.

But the resources industry has argued the latest draft decision relied too heavily on a report from the WWF on the implementation of the WHC's recommendations made in 2012.

The submission said that any reference to the environmental group's report was "of concern" and "any weight given to this report should be completely discounted".

"By its own admission, the methodology for this report consisted of a desktop review; followed by a subjective, superficial and arbitrary judgment on 'effectiveness'," the submission reads.

The Senate inquiry is due to report its findings at the end of August.



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