Green groups unite to support landowner against Palmer mine

Press release - 21 March, 2012

Australia’s largest environmental organisations have today united in support of landowner Paola Cassini in her opposition to plans by Clive Palmer’s Waratah Coal to build an open cut coal mine on the Bimblebox Nature Refuge.

Paola Cassoni, owner of the Bimblebox Nature Refuge said:
“As a landowner, I’ve tried everything to try to preserve my land for future generations. This place was supposed to be protected forever and there is something wrong with the system if it can be turned into a mine. ”
In a joint statement today, the leaders of Australia’s peak environmental groups said:
“It is not acceptable to turn Nature Refuges into open cut coal mines. Nature Refuges exist to protect nature in perpetuity. They form part of our precious natural heritage and should not be mined. “
“Clive Palmer’s proposal to build the massive ‘China First’ coal mine on top of the Bimblebox Nature Refuge is of very serious concern and would set a dangerous precedent for conservation in this country.”
“We call upon both Campbell Newman and Anna Bligh to immediately rule out approving mines on nature refuges and to specifically rule out the China First mine on Bimblebox.”
Clive Palmer’s massive ‘China First’ project involves building a 40 million tonne per annum coal mine (twice as large as any existing coal mine in Australia) on top of the Bimblebox Nature Refuge near Alpha, in Central Queensland. Bimblebox is an important conservation area and provides an important ecological refuge in the desert upland region that has been extensively cleared for grazing.
For media comment:
Paola Cassoni (Grazier and owner of Bimblebox Nature Refuge): Ph 07 4985 3474
John Hepburn, Greenpeace Senior Campaigner, Ph 0407 231 172
Simon Sheik, Getup! National Director, Ph: 0416 122 483
Toby Hutcheon, Queensland Conservation, Executive Director, ph 0419 664 503
Monica Richter, ACF, Sustainable Australia Program Manager, Ph: 0407 481 885.
Dr Tim Seelig, The Wilderness Society, Queensland Campaign Manager, Ph: 0439 201 183]
Derec Davies, Friends of the Earth, ph 0421 835 587
More information:
Information about the approval process for the China First project can be found here:
Information about Bimblebox Nature refuge can be found here:


A climate change analysis of the China First mine can be found here:
A critique of the negative economic impacts of the China First mine can be found here: