CQU researchers are keen to help Queensland avoid ‘Dutch disease’ in the wake of a coal boom which could almost double in intensity over the next five years.
The ‘Dutch disease’ phenomenon — named after the 1970s North Sea oil and gas boom — is where a resources boom over-amplifies declines in other sectors.
In the case of Queensland’s Bowen Basin, coal mine growth has caused severe shortages of skilled labour and housing, restricting the growth of other sectors and pricing lower paid workers out of mining communities.
The current boom has also revealed shortcomings in information flows and in planning and approval processes to support new mining developments.
CQU’s Professor in Regional Economic Development John Rolfe heads a two-year project granted $266,000 by the Australian Coal Association Research Program to examine ‘Regional Social and Economic Impacts of Mining Development in the Bowen Basin’.
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