Steve Irwin zoo to continue fight against 'eco vandalism'

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Melbourne, Sept 4 : Late crocodile hunter Steve Irwin's wife Terri has vowed to fight against 'environmental vandalism' of Steve Irwin Wildlife Reserve.

Queensland Land Court member Paul Smith ruled that Cape Alumina could access a portion of the 135,000-hectare Bertiehaugh Station leased by the family of the late crocodile hunter.

Cape Alumina will now conduct an environmental impact study for a bauxite mine on its lease, which covers about 15 percent of the reserve the Irwin family company Silverback Properties purchased after Steve Irwin's death by stingray barb in 2006.

Test drilling revealed a bauxite deposit of more than 100 million tonnes.

Silverback Properties had argued mining on the land should not be allowed because it is home to vulnerable plant and animal species. However, court ruled in favour of the company and awarded it 75 per cent of costs.

Now, Irwin's widow Terri has vowed to continue the legal battle.

"There cannot be any compromise on this. Destroying an ecosystem that has yet to be described is simply wrong," News.com.au quoted her, as saying.

Australia Zoo director Wes Mannion, said bauxite mining was "environmental vandalism'' and would destroy the Wenlock River - one of Australia's last wild rivers.

"What the mining company are trying to do is to portray this as just a dirty, old, overgrazed cattle property that's burnt out and degraded and that's what's on their website, pictures of that," he said.

"The reality is ... the area they want to mine is going to affect one of the most incredible areas in Australia.

"It's like mining an area in the Northern Territory and then saying: 'Oh, by the way, we want to knock over Uluru'," he added.

ANI

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