IN SCENES reminiscent of the anti-Traveston dam movement, dozens of determined protesters marched towards the Maryborough Court House yesterday where battle lines were drawn over the proposed Colton Mine.

Dressed in yellow and with placards ready, members of the Lock the Gate Alliance and the Aldershot and District Against Mining turned out for the first directions hearing in a case which will determine New Hope Coal's power to operate an open cut mine near Maryborough.

If successful, the mine, which would occupy the footprint of the old Burrum Coal Fields at Aldershot with two overlaying coal seam gas tenements in place, would see washed coal trucked to the Gladstone Port.

ADAM is opposing the project due to the risk of water contamination in the lower Mary River and the impact of toxic coal dust and noise on the Aldershot community.

Land Court president Carmel MacDonald said she had specifically requested the first hearing take place at Maryborough so that objectors could attend.

She granted a request from ADAM's legal advisor George Houen to have New Hope provide the expert reports it planned to put forward as evidence so those objecting to the mine could respond appropriately.

It was also agreed all parties would be required to carry out a site inspection.

A further directions hearing was set down for September 12 in Brisbane.

Protesters gather outside the Maryborough Courthouse to voice their opposition to the proposed Colton Mine at Aldershot.
Protesters gather outside the Maryborough Courthouse to voice their opposition to the proposed Colton Mine at Aldershot. Jessica Grewal


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