In what is being claimed as a win for people power and advocacy, mining company Arrow Energy has backed out of the Scenic Rim.
A decade on from Keep the Scenic Rim Scenic’s globally reported protests, including the 10-day Kerry blockade, Arrow has withdrawn its applications.
The withdrawal came amid new outrage from Mununjali traditional owners, the Mayor, State Member, tourism operators, farmers and environmentalists over revelations the company had applied for renewals in the region.
Minister for Resources Scott Stewart announced the withdrawal to Parliament on 24 June, citing the need for ‘coexistence’ in the government’s 30-year Queensland Resources Industry Development Plan.
“I can inform the House that Arrow Energy has formally withdrawn their application to renew exploration permits ATP (Authority to Prospect) 641 and 644 in the Scenic Rim. My department has accepted these withdrawal applications, which means these exploration permits no longer exist,” he said.
“I would like to place on record my thanks to all those who engaged with me in a respectful manner in relation to this matter, including Arrow Energy, the Mayor of Scenic Rim Regional Council, Greg Christensen, and the member for Scenic Rim MP.”
Arrow confirmed its withdrawal.
“Arrow has undertaken a review of our assets, including in the Scenic Rim, to better understand their strategic fit within our broader portfolio,” a spokesperson said.
“We confirm we have voluntarily withdrawn our two ATP renewal applications for the Clarence Moreton Basin. The decision provides clarity to the Scenic Rim community. Arrow remains fully committed to maintaining coexistence with the communities in which it operates.”
Mayor Greg Christensen said the withdrawal was a win for the region.
“The tenements for the potential exploration areas had the potential to drastically affect our urban water supply and local waterways and wetlands, and our regulated vegetation and areas of both Local and State Environmental Significance,” he said.
“We can now continue to pursue our very best future with confidence.”
State MP Jon Krause thanked Minister Stewart for meeting with him about the issue and said he was glad his fight for the community had paid off.
Keep the Scenic Rim Scenic spokesperson Innes Larkin thanked all involved, including his wife Tracey Larkin and fellow advocate Heidi Ross, who was instrumental in the 2012 protests.