JEREMY BUCKINGHAM MLC
THE GREENS NSW
THE GREENS NSW
10 November 2011
The Greens NSW mining spokesperson, Jeremy Buckingham MLC, today called on the government to cease mining approvals in the Clarence area until a Strategic Regional Land Use Plan has been developed, after the government revealed that Clarence was a low priority for them.
In Question Time today, Jeremy Buckingham asked: When will the government conduct a regional strategic land use plan for the Clarence region? Will the government commit to finishing this plan before it approves any further mining activity?
The answer from the Nationals The Hon. Duncan Gay was:
"We have indicated the priority areas that will be addressed in the first instance. Once we have finished addressing those priority areas we will work through the rest of the State.Jeremy Buckingham said: "The first Strategic Regional Land Use Plans are for the Hunter and Liverpool Plains areas. It may be many years before the government looks at the Clarence area."
"Clearly for the Liberals and Nationals, Clarence is a low priority. Residents have a chance to send the O'Farrell government a message that protecting their water and land should be a high priority.
"Mining should not occur until we've had a strategic look at the effects of mining on water and land use, and protect sensitive environmental areas and productive farm land.
"The Nationals are still trying to walk both sides of the street on mining issues," he said.
Contact: Max Phillips - 9230 2202 or 0419 444 916
HANSARD - 9 November 2011
CLARENCE REGIONAL STRATEGIC USE PLAN
The Hon. JEREMY BUCKINGHAM: My question is directed to the Hon. Duncan Gay, representing the Minister for Resources and Energy. The Minister will be aware that Metgasco has extensive plans for coal seam gas fields around Casino and Grafton. Metgasco has even mentioned a possible liquefied natural gas terminal off the north coast. The Minister will also be aware of the proposal for an antimony mine at the top of the Nymboida and Clarence catchment. When will the Government conduct a regional strategic land use plan for the Clarence region, and will the Government commit to finishing this plan before it approves any further mining activity?
The Hon. DUNCAN GAY: The first two parts of the question asked whether I am aware that Metgasco has large holdings and has a plan to develop an antimony mine. The answer to both parts is yes. The third part of the question asked when the Government will conduct a strategic plan. My response to that is that the Government will do that once it has completed the strategic plans that are underway at the moment.
I remind the member that until the Coalition developed a strategic plan while in opposition there was nothing in this regard. The friends of the Hon. Jeremy Buckingham with whom he sits and votes day after day on that side of the House are the greatest hypocrites in the world. They did absolutely nothing about this while in government. And the greatest hypocrite of all was the former member for Monaro before his electorate woke up to him and threw him out. He now sits on the Labor losers lounge. This Government has a policy to develop a strategic plan and we have implemented it. We have indicated the priority areas that will be addressed in the first instance. Once we have finished addressing those priority areas we will work through the rest of the State.
This State has never been as well protected as it is now—and as it will continue to be—under this Government. That does not mean that we can put our feet up on the sofa, pull the cigars out, talk French, think the job is over, and call in the spirits. We need to do a lot more work. We accept that there is a lot more work to do in this State to get the right balance between protecting strategic agricultural lands and having a proper mining industry. Labor should remember that the mining industry employs many people and contributes considerable money to this State's coffers. That money is used to fund education, policing and health across this State. I know that the Hon. Jeremy Buckingham wants us to live in the dark. We know he has been given the keys to the company Prius this week; he is the leader in waiting.
The Hon. Greg Donnelly: That's a bit of an old line.
The Hon. DUNCAN GAY: The old lines are the good ones. However, a Green wearing an orange tie is unbelievable and makes no sense at all.