Inquiry backs limits on mining appeals rights

A SENATE inquiry has backed Turnbull Government moves to limit the ability of community and environment groups to challenge major mining decisions.

The Senate Environment Committee on Thursday recommended passing proposed government laws to remove "extended standing" provisions for legal challenges to national environmental decisions.

Environment Minister Greg Hunt has said the laws would stop the courts being used to "delay" coal mines, but still allow direct challenges by local landholders.

The clauses the government hopes to remove allow appeals of ministerial approvals of major developments by groups representing the wider interests of the environment or community.

But the laws have been opposed by legal academics, environmental groups, the Greens and a powerful parliamentary committee.

The Scrutiny of Bills Committee raised several concerns about the laws, including that they may "result in the inability of the courts... to undertake their constitutional role".

- APN NEWSDESK



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