Hartcher’s resignation an opportunity to restore balance to mining portfolio

Media Release – 4 December 2013

The Greens mining spokesperson Jeremy Buckingham today welcomed the resignation of Resources and Energy Minister Chris Hartcher saying it presented an opportunity to restore balance to the position and called on Premier Barry O’Farrell to appoint a minister who respects the importance of agriculture and water resources, and who will actively promote renewable energy.Chris Hartcher

“Minister Hartcher treated community concerns about mining with utter contempt and many people, including the Greens will be saying good riddance,” said Greens MP Jeremy Buckingham.

“He was a one-eyed supporter of coal and coal seam gas over renewable energy and the Greens welcome the announcement that he has resigned.

“Minister Hartcher was very opaque about lobbying activities, refusing to answer basic questions about meetings with lobbyists such as former federal minister Santo Santoro – a factional ally within the hard right of the Liberal Party.

“The Premier should ensure the next minister for resources and energy respects the community and environmental concern about coal seam gas and the expansion of coal, actively promotes renewable energy, and understands the need to restore public confidence in the the administration of mining in NSW.

“Chris Hartcher is the third resources minister to be investigated by ICAC, after Eddie Obeid and Ian Macdonald. The Premier should take this opportunity to conduct a root and branch reform of the administration of mining in NSW, including the implementation of recommendations recently made by ICAC.”

Contact: Max Phillips 0419 444 916

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