Climate Litigation

Queensland Coal Mining Board of Inquiry Report – What comes next?

Focus: Methane Events and Labour Hire engagement in Safety

The Queensland Government established the Board of Inquiry (Board) in May 2020 after a serious accident at the Grosvenor mine, and a series of other high potential incidents (HPIs) at underground mines in the State between 1 July 2019 and 5 May 2020.

The Board was tasked with examining methane exceedance HPIs at Grosvenor, Grasstree, Moranbah North, and Oaky North underground coal mines.

As part of its work, the Board also considered the impact of labour hire in the mining industry and the perception that labour hire workers were unwilling to speak up about safety issues.

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Statutory Liability insurance and recent legislative changes

This class of insurance is specifically designed to respond in the event of an insured business, its employees, directors and officers inadvertently breaching an Act of any Australian Parliament by covering defence costs and fines or penalties issued against the business or individuals.

Governments are constantly legislating new laws or amending current legislation to place greater deterrents on businesses with subsequent fines increasing and in some instances being linked to current Consumer Price Index (inflation) levels.

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