For those that haven’t heard – North Stradbroke Island has approx. 20% of its area secured as National Park. At present, the Queensland Government hopes to have three-quarters of the island declared National Park within the next 10 years and up to 80% of the island into National Parks by the 2026. Before this time, though, some of the areas could still be sandmined.
In all, mining on the island will be phased out (even in the non-protected areas) by:
“·Yarraman mine to close in 2015 as already committed by the mining company, ending 47 per cent of mining on the island;
·The largest sand mine ( Enterprise ) shutting in 2019, ending a further 47 per cent of mining
·Three quarters of the island becoming national park by 2021;
·All mining ending with the closure of the small silica mine ( Vance ) in 2025;
·80 per cent of the island becoming national park by 2026;
·The mine path on Enterprise to be controlled and regulated to prevent the company’s proposed expansion and to protect the most environmentally sensitive areas on the lease.”
This is a great piece of news for conservation. Protecting the areas of North Stradbroke enables protection of ecosystems that are under threat from development on the mainland. Additionally, conservation of the island will enable these areas to have sandmining stopped immediately and enables these areas to be protected for future generations.