Sky Not Falling In
Contrary to hysterical media reports from the mining industry this week, the sky is not going to fall in because of the Brown & Alcorn decision this week in the Supreme Court.
Her Honour Justice Schmidt effectively pointed out in her decision that the Mining Act was reasonable, sensible, and perfectly clear. However, the miners did not comply with it as they should, and now they are required to do so.
This issue is as much about blatant non-compliance with the Mining Act as it is about consulting all affected parties. Calls now for the Mining Act to be changed beg the question why have laws at all if there are no consequences for flouting them, and no government department is monitoring compliance?
In this situation, landholders and rural communities have become the de facto monitors (as many coal communities already know to their cost) and in our exploration case, the ONLY redress has been the courts.
We are certain that fair-minded people, who respect property rights, will think VERY poorly of politicians who, under pressure from mining lobbyists, seek to change the law to favour one interest group over another.
People that understand this issue realise how dangerous it is that a self-interested lobby group could approach the State government to get a law changed that protects the rights of an external party on a private land title.
CCAG live on ABC radio today.