Hogsback on the black throated finch

HOGSBACK reckons the humble black throated finch might be the bird that stops the nation – or at least Adani’s proposed Carmichael’s project. Bad luck most people have never even heard of it.
Hogsback on the black throated finch Hogsback on the black throated finch Hogsback on the black throated finch Hogsback on the black throated finch Hogsback on the black throated finch
Suddenly, though, Queensland's government has become very sensitive to this bird, which has its home in Queensland's Galilee Basin.  
 
The government might have been really taken by a Sir David Attenborough interview by Prince William at the Davos summit about the need to protect nature, but Hogsback hasn't seen many shoppers walking down Queens Street Mall with binoculars engaged in bird watching.
 
For those who are curious, the black-throated finch is a small, solid bird with a distinctive black throat that contrasts with a blue-grey head and brown back.
 
It has a white rump sharply cut off from the black tail and the breast is cinnamon coloured. The bill is dark grey and legs are orange-red.
 
It is indeed endangered in Queensland and extinct in New South Wales.
 
For this reason, Hogsback believes responsible operators in the mining industry should take steps in their preparation to preserve the bird.
 
Adani's environmental management plan, which has been in the works for more than three years, will increase the black throated finch's habitat by 30,000ha, boosting its chances of survival.
 
The federal Department of Environment approved Adani's management plan.
 
The Queensland Department of Environment and Science has also been reviewing the plan for more than 18 months and has black-throated finch experts on its own staff.
 
However, the Queensland government has decided to listen to calls from environmentalists and picked the Threatened Species Recovery Hub to review the mine's environmental management plans.
 
The Threatened Species Recovery Hub is stacked with Adani-doubters.
 
An Adani spokesowman said on the face of evidence provided and available in the public domain, "it is apparent that this hub is compromised and is incapable of providing an independent review".
 
Australian Mines and Metals Association acting chief executive Tara Diamond has also chimed in, stating Queenslanders deserve a state government that supports its major job-creating industries, not one more interested in appeasing minority activist views.
 
The mining industry has a long history working side-by-side with nature and when properly regulated the two can continue to live together harmoniously.
 
However, Hogsback fears that when environmental regulation becomes a stalling tactic by governments, it can end badly for all involved -government, industry and, potentially, endangered wildlife.