Grain growers cut down mining review and push for submissions extension

South Australian grain growers have questioned the independence of a review of South Australia’s mining laws and the short-time frame for responses, according to a report in Adelaide’s Advertiser.

Darren Arney, chief executive of Grain Producers South Australia (GPSA) pointed out that “Independence cannot be guaranteed when the department is so close to the mining and approvals process and so far removed from primary production.”

The SA grain industry, with an export value of more than $2 billion annually should “be a key part of the review, given the potential of the mining industry to impact on agricultural production,” Arney said to the Advertiser.

GPSA is also seeking an extension to the consultation period because harvesting in the next eight weeks is the busiest time of the year for farmers and they need to focus on harvesting and not filling out submissions.

“It is just not fair to growers to conduct such an important review in their busiest time of year.”

Arney was quoted as saying that a deadline of March 2017 would be fairer than December 2016.

A discussion paper is expected to be released by the SA Government by the end of November.