Mining expansion benefiting foreign corporations, not NSW

Media Release

29 June 2011

The Greens mining spokesperson, Jeremy Buckingham MLC, has called on the NSW government to put communities ahead of the profits of multinational mining corporations and protect the long-term future of NSW after a new report revealed that the mining industry in Australia is 83% foreign owned.

“The Greens call on the O’Farrell Government to implement tougher planning and environment regulations on the mining industry to protect the long-term future of NSW, our farms, our environment and our economic prosperity,” said Greens MP Jeremy Buckingham.

“The Edwards Report says $50 billion in mining profits will be sent out of Australia in dividends over the next five years.  Meanwhile many people in mining communities must deal with higher prices in their local community, an influx in transient workers and environmental and health effects.

“The mining boom is bringing prosperity to some, but coming at the expense of many in regional and rural NSW and is squeezing out other, more sustainable industries.

“Revelations that the Chinese Government owned Shenhua Coal is buying out productive farms in the Liverpool Plains has highlighted the need for government action to bring the mining industry under control.

“Agriculture can’t compete with the mega-bucks available to the big mining companies.  But once the minerals are dug out, the local community will be left with just a hole in the ground, not an ongoing sustainable industry.

“We’re seeing a global struggle for resources, whether it is coal, gas or arable land.  The Chinese, the Koreans, the Indians, are all trying to secure these resources and we are being left with the mess in NSW.

“The government’s Strategic Regional Land Use policy provides an opportunity to reflect on the future of NSW.  The Greens do not believe we should sacrifice our agricultural productivity, manufacturing, and service industries such as tourism, in order to dig out more coal and exploit coal seam gas,” he said.

Contact: Max Phillips – 9230 2202  or  0419 444 916

The Edward’s Report: ‘Foreign Ownership of Australian Mining Profits’ available online.


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