Federal Court fight to stop Tarkine mine

Mining in Tasmania’s Tarkine region is being challenged as conservationists take their battle to the federal court.

The Tarkine National Coalition has lodged a case in the Federal Court seeking a review on Federal Environment Minister Tony Burke’s decision approving Shree Minerals iron ore mine.

Campaign co-ordinator Scott Jordan said Burke approved the mine without knowing the impacts it could have on the endangered Tasmanian devil.

"We will argue that Minister Burke has not acted in accordance with the provisions of the Environmental Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act, and as such the approvals granted are invalid," Jordan said.

"This mine should not have received approval, and we are asking the court to rule against it. “

Debate erupted over the application for mining developments in the region last year, with Federal Environment Minister Tony Burke rejecting a National Heritage listing for the area.

Debate continues to rages between environmental groups who want mining developments halted and companies and potential employees who say opening up the Tarkine region to mining is crucial in the future economic prosperity of Tasmania.

Earlier this year, Tasmania’s Premier Lara Giddings said three new mining projects were expected in the region following Burke’s rejection of the National Heritage listing.

Giddings said she expected Venture Minerals’ proposal for a $200 million tin mine at Mount Lindsay to be approved, creating 1000 jobs.

She said that developments like Venture's Riley Creek mine and the approved Shree Metals mine at Nelson Bay were signs that mining investment would grow in Tasmania now that the “dark cloud” of the Tarkine national heritage nomination had been removed.

Environmentalists argue that open-cut mining will destroy the area and say that any decision to expand mining will result in irreversible contamination.

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