Water is our most precious resource. Yet the Queensland government has given Adani special access to water for its mine, much to the outrage of farmers and rural communities.
With Queensland reeling from drought, made worse by climate change, the government has granted Adani a water licence allowing them to take unlimited groundwater, for 60 years, for free.
The project risks water resources - rivers, ancient springs, and aquifers of the Great Artesian Basin (GAB) adjoining the mine - which are all vital in times of drought.
Adani's mine will:
- Suck out at least 270 billion litres of groundwater over the life of the mine.
- Risk damaging aquifers of the Great Artesian Basin - the sole water source for much of rural Queensland.
- Dump polluted wastewater into the Carmichael River.
- Threaten the Doongmabulla and Mellaluka ancient springs - 160 wetlands that provide permanent water during drought. The Doongmabulla springs are one of the last pristine desert oases in the world and the most important cultural site for the Wangan and Jagalingou Traditional Owners. Water experts say there's an 80% chance Adani's mine will drain the springs forever.
Leave behind 6 unfilled coal pits that will drain millions of litres of groundwater forever.
- The Federal Environment Minister signed off on a plan allowing Adani to drain 12.5 billion litres from the Suttor River without a full environmental assessment. This is almost as much water as that taken by all the agricultural users combined. Secret documents have shown that a farmer was denied access to the same river. It’s one rule for Adani, and another for drought-stricken farmers.
If Adani is allowed to go ahead, it will open up the Galilee Basin coal deposits for many more mines, all drawing on Queensland's limited water resources. The cumulative impacts of all these mines on the Great Artesian Basin has not been modelled. Once this water is gone it cannot be restored.