Broader inquiry needed into Macdonald’s coal and gas licences after ICAC’s damning report
MEDIA RELEASE – 30 October 2013
The Greens NSW spokesperson on mining Jeremy Buckingham called for a broader inquiry into all exploration licences issued by the former Labor government and a review of the Mining and Petroleum Acts, after ICAC released a damning report that concluded that the current allocation system had “so many risks and opportunities for corruption, it was almost inevitable that corruption would occur at some point.”
“ICAC is damning in its criticism of the current system of allocation. The Greens want to see a swift and comprehensive response from the government, including an overhaul of the law in this area and an inquiry into licences granted under the former Labor government,” said Greens MP Jeremy Buckingham.
“ICAC has concluded that ‘perverse incentives and opportunities are embedded in the existing coal allocation system have the capacity to distort the decision-making process on what and when coal deposits should be released ‘. The government must move quickly to fix what is clearly a broken system.
“The Greens welcome the recommendations made by ICAC. The Greens believe a representative of the Office of Environment should be included on the proposed steering group to oversee this area.
“The Greens welcome the use of competitive auctions for licences and have serious concerns over the seemingly ad hoc amounts paid for licences under the previous government.
“Clearly the recommendations of this ICAC report necessitate a serious overhaul of both the Mining Act and the Petroleum (Onshore) Act.
“Given the inadequacies of the system and that two former mining ministers have been found to have acted corruptly, there should be a broader inquiry into the exploration and production licences issued by the former government.”
Contact: Max Phillips – 9230 2202 or 0419 444 916