Thursday, November 17, 2011

Mining approvals system 'corrupt' | Perth Now

Mining approvals system 'corrupt' | Perth Now
WA'S approvals system for development projects, such as mining, has been slammed as "corrupt" by the former chief of the Environmental Protection Authority.

In a hard-hitting speech Barry Carbon said developers are being "blackmailed" into making financial contributions to secure environmental approvals.

Mr Carbon told the Environment Institute of Australia and New Zealand that mining companies and other proponents were forced to make contributions sometimes millions of dollars to government agencies before approvals were even considered.

Meanwhile, detailed environmental assessment reports paid for by proponents are not being read by bureaucrats because they are too long, he added.

Mr Carbon said the contributions, called offsets, used to be rare and were demanded by officials to compensate for environmental harm when it was unavoidable.

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