The $21.7 billion Carmichael project in the Galilee Basin, Queensland has received all required primary approvals and can soon begin construction on water, rail and mine infrastructure.

The Queensland Government has declared the combined water, mine and rail infrastructure as “critical”  and the project’s  “prescribed” status has been renewed and expanded.

Queensland Minister for State Development, Dr Anthony Lynham, said this decision would mean less red tape for the proposed project, and the jobs and business opportunities it offered.

“This step bundles together major elements of the project for the first time – the mine, the 389km rail line, and the water infrastructure, including a pipeline, pumping stations and a dam upgrade,” Dr Lynham said.

“It makes it more efficient to establish easements for infrastructure like the water pipeline and the rail, and expands the Coordinator-General’s power to ensure timely approvals.”

Dr Lynham said the decision was based on advice from the independent Coordinator-General, who continued to meet regularly with Adani to progress the project.

“When this government came to power in early 2015, it is fair to say that there was a long way to go with the approvals that Adani needed before they could start construction,” Dr Lynham said.

Mr Lynham said since early 2015, 22 key Commonwealth, state and local government approvals had been granted for Adani’s mine, rail and port facilities, and 29 key milestones had been reached.

“Adani has now obtained all the necessary primary approvals for its mine, rail and port project – and most importantly, I have granted the mining leases.

“At a state level, the only key approvals remaining are water licenses and Adani is actively working on those with my Department of Natural Resources and Mines.  

“I know that regional communities particularly will welcome the advice from Adani that construction of the project is set to begin in 2017.”

Dr Lynham said the progress on the project had been achieved while protecting the Great Barrier Reef and meeting Queensland and Commonwealth environmental impact assessment requirements.

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