Daily Mercury

More coalmines to release water as warning sounded on storms

MORE Queensland coal mines will be able to release water during a deluge in the coming wet season, but the state government is warning that is no excuse for failing to prepare for an emergency.

Mines Minister Andrew Cripps has told mines, quarries, petrol and gas operations to be prepared for destructive weather.

"In recent years we have seen several mines inundated by floodwaters and coal mining production brought to a standstill as a result of severe weather," Mr Cripps said.

The warning comes after the state this week expanded its coal mine water release program to cover more than four mines.

Meanwhile, Minister Cripps also unveiled a new "resource operations plan" for the Fitzroy region, which surrounds Rockhampton.

The plan is to develop a stronger economy in the region, potentially through the use of water harnessed from coal seam gas operations.

"This water has the potential to boost agricultural production in the area," he said.

The proposal will be open for discussion until February 14 next year.

For more information, visit www.dnrm.qld.gov.au and click on "Draft Fitzroy Basin resource operations plan".