Secret report shows Queensland Government approved “superficial, unsuitable, and untested” Black throated Finch plan knowingly risking extinction
A new report released today by Birdlife Australia has revealed that the Queensland Government commissioned and then ignored and kept secret key recommendations from an independent scientific review of Adani’s plan to manage the impacts of its Carmichael coal mine on the endangered Black-throated Finch, knowingly risking the extinction of the bird.
Birdlife Australia obtained the independent review through Queensland’s Right to Information laws after the Queensland Information Commissioner ordered the state government to release the secret document.
Analysis of the independent scientific review and Adani’s Black-throated Finch management plan approved by the Queensland Government found that none of the expert recommendations and findings were acted on before Adani’s plan was approved by the Queensland Government.
The independent scientific review conducted by Melbourne University researchers stated without ambiguity that “The Black-throated Finch management plan does not meet the content requirements of an acceptable plan to manage an endangered species”. The review described Adani’s plans to manage the impacts of its coal mine on the endangered bird as “superficial and untested” and not backed by evidence.
The Birdlife Australia report findings and release of the independent scientific advice have prompted calls for the Queensland Government to urgently intervene to prevent further clearing of habitat by Adani.
Mackay Conservation Group Campaign Manager Sunny Hungerford says: “The Queensland Government urgently needs to intervene and order Adani to stop clearing habitat of the endangered Black-throated Finch until the independent expert recommendations, which it has so far ignored, are incorporated into Adani’s plan.”
“Every day that clearing continues under Adani’s dodgy management plan brings the Finch a step closer to extinction. Every hectare of Black throated Finch habitat is critical to the survival of the species and Adani plans to destroy 16,000 football fields of critical habitat.”
“Queensland’s Environment Minister Meaghan Scanlon is failing endangered species by allowing Adani to bulldoze critical habitat without an adequate plan to manage the impacts of its destructive coal mine on the endangered Black-throated Finch.
“The Queensland Government commissioned scientific advice, ignored that advice, kept it secret, and then allowed Adani to start bulldozing endangered Finch habitat. The Queensland Government knew that scientific experts had warned about the risk of extinction and that Adani’s plan to manage the impacts of its coal mine on the Finch was woefully inadequate.
“The Queensland Government is allowing the real time extinction of the Black-throated Finch to occur under its watch and must act to safeguard a future for this iconic species. The information in this report indicates to us that Minister Scanlon must act now to halt clearing of habitat on the Adani site.
“Queenslanders would be shocked and appalled that the Queensland Government is knowingly allowing the Finch to go extinct.”
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