Pictured above: protestors meet on Seven Mile Beach Lennox Head to make their feelings about the sandmine known
After months of hard work and protest, members of the group No Sand Mine For Lennox are celebrating tonight after owners of the land in question, the McGeary family, withdrew their proposal to develop a new sand mine off Ross Lane, outside of Lennox Head.
According to the McGeary’s statement released today, approximately 150 people had lodged objections to the development.
But the matter is not completely over yet. According to the McGeary’s they had not fulfilled their obligation to remediate an existing ex-mine site, because they were waiting for results of this development application. They say they will now go ahead and fulfill that requirement.
‘We have held off completing that remediation work pending the outcome of Development Application 2017/670.’
‘Unless Council requests otherwise, we will immediately proceed to rehabilitate the land in accordance with the approved Rehabilitation Plans,’ the family statement says.
And they say they will continue to explore future possibilities for their land with regard to sand mining.
‘We will shortly write to Ballina Shire Council asking the Council to conduct a strategic planning exercise to look at the demand for quarrying material in the Shire to identify (and specifically zone), appropriate locations in the Shire for extractive industries.
‘We would hope that the outcome of such an exercise would be to identify our land because of its resource potential and strategic importance.
‘If that was the case, we would prepare and submit a fresh Development Application for the site with the protection afforded by a site specific extractive industry zoning.’
This means there may yet be another DA proposal for a mine on the McGeary’s site.
According to Amelia Hicks, who has been one of the leaders of the No Sand Mine protest, the group hopes that the McGeary’s will not go ahead with any future proposals, because the mine has ‘no social license’.
In addition Amelia and the No Sand Mine group have been claiming that the mine will endanger the environmentally sensitive North Creek catchment and a range of fauna and flora that are dependent on that sensitive environment, add traffic to an already pressured Ross Lane, and scar the pristine hinterland.
Follow the work of the group on Facebook.