In a rowdy, well attended Council Meeting last week, Liverpool Plains Shire sought Councillors support to accept Shenhua mine waste into Quirindi, reportedly for $400k over 18 months. Benefits specified were beautifying the main streets of Quirindi and Werris Creek. Critics claimed this income would scarcely cover costs of repairing roads damaged in transport of this toxic waste. Further meetings have highlighted lack of cost/benefit analysis and detailed costings.
Gunnedah and Narrabri Shire Councils are having second thoughts; the latter reportedly halting acceptance of any further Santos waste.
In a win for sanity, the Quirindi decision is now deferred for further consultation on this vital public issue.
NSW Farmers annual conference last week passed motions supporting food security as the agriculture versus mining debate dominated discussions. President Jock Laurie again called on Government to amend mining legislation to increase protection of Prime Ag Land. Delegates voted to lobby Government to halt awarding coal and gas licenses until the results of the independent catchment water study are known.
The conference was addressed by Federal Agriculture Minister Tony Bourke, Federal Opposition Leader Malcom Turnbull, NSW Premier Nathan Rees and Primary Industry Minister Ian Macdonald. Each referred to the Liverpool Plains in their initial speeches, and all subsequently took questions regarding mining issues in this region.
Locally, federal politicans Senators Nick Minchin and John Williams heard first hand the implications of mining the Plains at a CCAG and community meeting at Caroona Hall, and this week M.P.s Greg Hunt and Mark … Read More »