Updated: February 12, 2013
Coal project approvals steer us towards local and global disaster
The Wilderness Society is speaking out against the far reaching consequences of Minister Burke’s recent decision to approve two large coal mines in the northwest of New South Wales, pointing not only to the devastating local impacts, but to the impacts felt around the world from the extra coal that will further stoke the climate change fire.
“These mines have dreadful impacts at the local, regional and global level. They don't just destroy local koala and threatened habitat, which should be reason enough for our governments not to approve them, but they also create a serious community health problem” said Naomi Hogan of The Wilderness Society.
“These mines will impact communities everywhere, by contributing to Australia's already disproportionate responsibility for climate change impacts.
“The Boggabri and Maules Creek coal mines set to carve out Leard State Forest will create enough emissions comparable to the total emissions of an OECD country. Entire first world countries contribute less carbon pollution than these mines.
“Each new coal mine approved risks yet more of our water and ecological security. They threaten the natural icons that are our heritage, from our southern ocean marine life to our northern savannas, our beaches, forests and alpine environments.
In its World Energy Outlook 2012 report released in November 2012, the International Energy Agency advised that two thirds of all proven fossil fuel reserves must stay in the ground if the world is to avoid dangerous climate change.
“Coal is an outdated energy supply that is costing our water security and our health, destroying lands and tearing apart communities, while adding serious fuel to the fire of climate change impacts across the globe.
“The approval of the massive Maules Creek and Boggabri coal mines on the Liverpool Plains now sets us along the same course of environmental devastation like we’ve seen in the Hunter Valley.“The move by local community members to move swiftly to legal action against these crooked mining companies and their inappropriate Maules Creek and Boggabri mining developments is the best option in an untenable situation. The battle is far from over for these communities and ecosystems under threat.
“This approval by Burke and our Federal Government for the Maules Creek, Boggabri and Gloucester mines proves yet again it will be up to active community members to protect our lands and water, as our governments certainly can't be trusted with the task.
Further comment: Naomi Hogan, Campaign Manager, The Wilderness Society Newcastle, 0401 650 411
Jess Lerch, Climate Campaigner, The Wilderness Society, 0423 057 828
For more information, please contact:
The Wilderness Society Newcastle Inc
Hunter Heritage Centre,
90 Hunter Street,
Newcastle, NSW, 2300
Phone: 02 4929 4395