Independent MP for New England Tony Windsor has announced a Private Members Bill, which will be seconded by fellow independent Rob Oakeshott, that will see greater controls over the mining industry’s use of water.


The bill will punish any mining action that has a negative effect on the health of waterways in its immediate vicinity.


The announcement by Mr Windsor comes ass the Queensland Department of Environment and Resource Management (DERM) has said that it is continuing its investigation into several Boeww Basin mines in the state’s centre regarding unauthorized water discharges by mines following the summer floods earlier this year.


The DERM has claimed that almost 30 mines had breached environmental regulations regarding safe disposal of water.


However, the DERM has said that while the agency may pursue further investigation, there is ‘very little’ chance of environmental harm due to the dilution and quantity of floodwaters at the time.


The department’s announcement comes as dozens of Queensland’s coal mines are still struggling to dispose of the water in their inundated mines.