$90k land court battle drawing to a conclusion

COSTLY: Bruce Currie has spent $90,000 in the land court.
COSTLY: Bruce Currie has spent $90,000 in the land court. Contributed

IT'S been a long process that has cost Bruce Currie around $90,000, but his court battle against mining giant GVK Hancock is almost over.

The Central Queensland grazier has spent months representing himself in the land court just to try and get some documentation that guarantees his water supply will be secured.

And since the case has been so time-consuming, he has also suffered indirect costs to his business, which he said have been substantial.

Bruce's cattle property, Speculation, north of Jericho, is around 12km from the proposed Alpha coal mine.

He has no issue with the mining company saying they won't have an impact, but he said it was very suspicious that they would make those claims then refuse to sign any documentation.

"We haven't been able to get documentation that guarantees our water supply," he said.

"We've been pushing for a make-good agreement because we want to be proactive about it, and we believe the guidelines that are set down by the co-ordinator-general are more reactive.

"The company doesn't have to do anything unless there is an impact on our water supply."

Speculation has two bores, which each service half of the property.

"What do you do with 1800 cattle when you've got a problem with your water supply?" he asked.

He said another concern with the mining companies saying there will be no impact is that their research does not include information about what to do if a problem does arise.

He wants them to put in place a monitoring bore on a contour where they believe there will be no impact, so if the water stays static it can be determined their research is accurate.

Bruce is also disappointed they were forced into a situation where they had to defend themselves.

"At the end of the day, we feel that a lot of these issues should be resolved by the government," he said.

Final submissions were heard in the land court in late October, and Bruce is hoping to hear a verdict this month or early in the new year.

The judge's verdict will be put forward as a recommendation to the minister.

Topics:  gvk hancock livestock water quality