Archived web page - Kin Kin Community Group Inc.

Page updated 14 March 2015.
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Stop The MEGA Quarry

Key Resource Area set aside by Queensland State Government

The Hard Facts

Neilsen's Quality Gravels Pty Ltd are attempting to operate a MEGA quarry under a lease on land owned by Mr John Shepperson, located on Lot 259 March 187, off Shepperson's Lane, Kin Kin ( 60.02 ha or 148 acres). According to this plan, court documents and their press releases, they intend to:
  • Extract an area 800 metres by 400 metres wide, 180 metres deep, made up of 11 benches each 15 metres high.
  • Conduct an average of 18 blasts per annum, producing up to 900,000 tonnes each year.
  • Operate within the Noosa River catchment area.
  • Erect many buildings, including crushers and conveyors.
  • Use up to 100 truck and trailer combinations per day each way along totally inadequate Hinterland roads.
  • Operate 6 days a week, from 7 am to 6 pm - for at least up until the permit expires in 2033.
  • Haul along inadequate roads which will impact on Wolvi, Cootharaba, Boreen Point, Tewantin, Noosa, Cooroy, Pomona, Cooran and Kin Kin communities.
  • Operate during school drop off and pickup times, endangering our children.
  • Operate adjacent to the Noosa Trail on three sides and along the nearest Council road. This Council sponsored Trail is used by school and sporting groups, eco-tourists and locals. Quarry operations have already compromised a large section of this iconic trail.
  • Create an elevated perched lake with capacity in excess of 450 ML, with no plan for its management in this environmentally sensitive headwater of the Noosa River system.
  • Dam the headwaters of Wahpunga Creek, with no provision for allowing environmental flows to pass to farming properties and the creek below.

What is the Kin Kin Community Group doing?

We have already challenged the secretive process which has allowed this MEGA quarry to be approved. See details here.
Public outrage has been huge and we are now harnessing that dissent to prove the destructive effects this MEGA quarry would have on our community and the wider Sunshine Coast.
We have continued to expose the blatant disregard this operator has displayed for regulation, to the extent that although they said they would be operational by March 2010 they have not yet been permitted to begin legal extraction for sale. By constantly bringing alleged breaches to the notice of Council and DERM officers we have, amongst a range of changes, now forced the operator to modify a patently inadequate sedimentation containment system. Whether this revised system would ultimately safeguard the Noosa River catchment is very debatable. It appears to be, after all, only a third the size of the original approved containment system.

In mid 2011 we engaged the University Of Queensland Schools of Journalism and Communication, and Tourism and Business, to conduct a study to examine the impact of the Kin Kin quarry on the economy and environment of the entire Noosa hinterland region. The survey was completed and initial statistics released to us indicate that 87% of hinterland businesses are opposed to the quarry. However we believe a legal challenge by a proponent of the quarry lead to the suppression of the report by the University. We have had no communication from the University on the matter and can only surmise that an out of court, confidential settlement was agreed between the parties. This was extremely disappointing, considering the huge amount of work the students had put into the gathering and collation of data. We can only assume that the results were so conclusively against the quarry project that some of its proponents were prepared to go to extreme lengths to suppress the findings.

Since Neilsens indicated that they intended reversing the method of extraction (from the approved "top down" method to one of "bottom up") we have lobbied Council to have this thoroughly investigated. Neilsens put a revised Quarry Management Plan before Council in December 2011 to attempt to alter the approved plan. We opposed this proposal for many reasons and enlisted the voluntary help of a range of industry experts and scientists to help us. Suffice to say that a strong, evidence-based case was formulated and presented to Councillors and Council officers. At the head of our argument was the conviction that our community should not settle for anything less than World's Best Practice, placed as we are in the UNESCO Noosa Biosphere reserve. It is now up to Neilsens to show that they are up to the task. Council passed the Revised Quarry Management Plan in part in July 2012 (with some amendments we had sought). Neilsens did not accept some of these amendments and have now indicated to Council that they will seek further changes to the QMP in a future Council meeting.

Click the petition image to see the petition we submitted to Sunshine Coast Council against the revised Kin Kin Quarry Management Plan.
Council approved the revised Quarry Management Plan in part on 26 July 2012, on a motion put forward by Cr Wellington. See an extract from the Sunshine Coast Council Minutes here. The Appendix B included in the resolution, containing 17 amendments, can be seen here.

The complete minutes of the Ordinary meeting are available from Council's web site.

See later developments in our Quarry Documents page.

During a presentation to Council's Strategy & Planning Committee on 15 February 2012, Rod Huntley, a consultant with Groundwork Plus on behalf of Neilsens, the quarry operator, stated: "The changes will have a net positive effect on the environment." We understand this to be a claim that the environment will be better off for having a quarry than if it did not exist. You be the judge!

We invite you to become fully informed by viewing this page linking to many of the documents we have gathered to support our case.
Updated 18 January 2014.

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