Stand up for Bulga: Baird Government should reject open cut coal mine disaster

MEDIA RELEASE – 30 June 2015

The Greens NSW mining spokesperson Jeremy Buckingham today called on the Baird Government to stand up for the community of Bulga and reject Rio Tinto’s latest proposal for a massive open cut coal mine in the heart of the Hunter Valley, rather than hiding behind the Planning Assessment Commission.Medi

This comes as the NSW Planning Assessment Commission holds a public meeting today to hear views on Rio Tinto’s proposal to expand the Mt Thorley Warkworth open-cut coal mine near Bulga in the Hunter Valley before making its final recommendation to the NSW Government.

“Coal is the whale oil of the 21st century and the Baird Government need to wake up to this fact before they allow the community of Bulga to be wiped off the map by an irresponsible and destructive industry in its death throes,” said Greens MP Jeremy Buckingham.

“The Mt Thorley/Warworth expansion proposal is completely disconnected from economic, environmental and social reality and underscores the piecemeal and unstrategic planning system that we have in NSW.

“It is time for the Coalition to stand up for Bulga, reject Rio Tinto’s open cut coal mine disaster and start to plan for a just transition away from coal in the Hunter Valley.

“The community wants certainty, but instead they have a government which is leaving the Hunter Valley in limbo, without any plan for the region’s future as the coal industry declines.

“Mike Baird needs to stop wining and dining with coal lobbyists and have an honest discussion with the electorate about the future of coal in the context of climate change and the structural decline of the industry,” Mr Buckingham said

Contact: Jack Gough – 9230 2202 or 0427 713 101


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