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    Coat of ArmsMedia Release
    Finance, Natural Resources and The Arts
    The Honourable Rachel Nolan

    Lockyer Valley protected under Australia’s first bill to shield Strategic Cropping Land

    Finance, Natural Resources and The Arts
    The Honourable Rachel Nolan

    Tuesday, October 25, 2011

    Lockyer Valley protected under Australia’s first bill to shield Strategic Cropping Land

    The Queensland Government has today taken an historic step becoming the first Government in the nation to introduce a bill to parliament which will protect strategic cropping land in the Lockyer Valley.

    Minister for Natural Resources Rachel Nolan said the Strategic Cropping Land Bill 2011 will ensure that Queensland’s very best cropping land is protected from mining and other development.

    “This legislation is an Australian-first, proving that the State Government is committed to protecting strategic cropping land for the benefit of all Queenslanders,” Ms Nolan said.

    “The Lockyer Valley is home to some of the state’s prime agricultural land and have a long and proud history of cropping dating back to the 1800’s.

    “Landholders in the Lockyer Valley can be assured that their land will be protected by this legislation for generations to come.

    “At the heart of the legislation is science, with a professionally developed soil science test determining just where the state’s best quality cropping land lies.

    “The Lockyer Valley will be home to one of two Strategic Cropping Protection Areas in the state which will provide the highest level of protection to Strategic Cropping Land from development.

    “The restrictions apply to open cut mining, coal seam gas, underground coal gasification, long-wall or underground mining, and urban and industrial development.

    “Outside the Protection Areas, development on land in the Management Zone can only proceed under strict conditions.

    “The legislation will come into effect early next year providing certainty to landholders and developers.”

    Minister Nolan said the consultation process leading up to the implementation of the legislation has been thorough and necessary.

    “This is an important policy for this government and we have been in constant contact with stakeholders to make sure that we get it right,” Ms Nolan said.

    “The Stakeholder Advisory Committee will continue as an advisory body during implementation of the legislation.

    “The committee, which includes representatives from the agriculture, resource and urban development sectors, as well as local government and natural resource management groups, has proved invaluable throughout the policy’s development and will continue its important work during implementation of the legislation.

    “It will also play a key role in reviewing the legislation after it has been in place for two years.”

    More information about the Queensland’s Government plan to protect strategic cropping land is available on the Department of Environment and Resource Management website at www.derm.qld.gov.au

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