Green group Save the Tarkine wants to block Venture Minerals’ mine

Green group Save the Tarkine wants to block Venture Minerals’ mine

649c6f7a-5b47-4083-b214-75bbd4c60268Environmental groups keep fighting the mining activity in the Tarkine region of Tasmania, in Australia, where the fauna and flora are being affected. The organizations claim the government has failed to properly consider the impact of mining on species like the Tasmanian devil.

The group Save the Tarkine is challenging the authorities’ approval given to Venture Minerals’ project, which consists in creating a mine at Riley creek, in the north-west of Tasmania. The organization presented the case in the federal court, after an appeal sent to the planning authority to prevent the mine got dismissed last month.

Previously, Save the Tarkine won a legal bid to block another Tarkine mine, this one at the Nelson Bay river, but Mark Butler, the environment minister at the time, gave the final go-ahead, so a further legal challenge is being planned by the environmental group.

tasmanian devil
Tasmanian devil

Save the Tarkine’s patron says that the mine should be reconsidered. According to Bob Brown:

Firstly, the federal minister made a decision to go ahead before the conditions on the mine were agreed. Secondly, they didn’t look at the

[cumulative] impact of the other mines and logging on the Tarkine, which has the spotted-tailed quoll, wedge-tailed eagle and Tasmanian devil, which are all endangered species.

Thirdly, the conditions imposed include a fine for running over or destroying a Tasmanian devil. This money would be used to keep the devils alive in zoos. That’s not what federal environment law is meant to do — it is meant to prevent them from becoming extinct in the wild as the Tasmanian tiger did.

tarkineMaplargeBrown says that the conditions attached to the mine are “farcical” and will set a dangerous precedent for the Tarkine, as well as other wilderness areas across Australia.

This has national ramifications because the government will be saying that it’s acceptable to keep our wild flora and fauna in zoos and we should just accept that. The whole nation won’t accept that. It isn’t what Australians want to see happen.

The Tarkine is one of the last wild regions in Australia, with a large area of temperate rainforest. And yet there are 57 mining applications across the area. It’s a national and global heirloom that should be protected by world heritage listing, not a place where you can run over Tasmanian devils as long as you pay compensation.

The biggest problem is that 80 percent of the Tasmanian devil population has been decimated by a facial tumour disease and the Tarkine is believed to be the last tumour-free area in the state.