Social Justice Impacts of the Resources Boom

Carrington, Kerry & Pereira, Margaret (2011) Social Justice Impacts of the Resources Boom. In Conference Proceedings : Crime, Justice and Social Democracy: An International Conference, QUT, Brisbane, pp. 357-370.

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Until the 1970s mining leases were issued by state governments subject to conditions that companies build or substantially finance local community infrastructure, including housing, streets, transport, schools, hospitals and recreation facilities. Townships and communities went hand in hand with mining development. However, in the past thirty years mining companies have moved progressively to an expeditionary strategy for natural resources extraction - operating a continuous production cycle of 12 hour shifts - increasingly reliant on non-resident, fly-in, fly-out or drive-in, drive-out (FIFO/DIDO) workers who typically work block rosters, reside in work camps adjacent to existing communities and travel large distances from their homes. This paper presents the key findings of our survey into the social impacts of this kind of mining development in Qld. Based on the results we argue that the social license to develop new mining projects is strong for projects requiring a 25% or less non-resident workforce, diminishes significantly thereafter and is very weak for projects planning to recruit a non-resident workforce in excess of 75%. This finding is significant because there are at least 67 new mining projects undergoing social impact assessment in Queensland, and many it appears are planning to hire significant proportions of non-resident workers. The paper considers the policy implications of this growing social justice issue concluding there is a clear need for national leadership in formulating a national policy framework for guiding socially responsible and sustainable mining development into the next millennium.

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ID Code: 78373
Item Type: Conference Paper
Refereed: Yes
Keywords: mining; FIFO; fly in fly out; resources; social impacts
ISBN: 978-0-9871533-2-6
Subjects: Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > STUDIES IN HUMAN SOCIETY (160000) > CRIMINOLOGY (160200)
Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > STUDIES IN HUMAN SOCIETY (160000) > POLICY AND ADMINISTRATION (160500) > Public Policy (160510)
Divisions: Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > Faculty of Law
Current > Schools > School of Justice
Deposited On: 03 Nov 2014 05:17
Last Modified: 04 Nov 2015 21:01

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