Greens Call on all Parties to Say No to Hunter Gas Pipeline & Yes to Bill to Ban All Coal & Gas on the Liverpool Plains
Greens MP Cate Faehrmann visited the Liverpool Plains on Monday with Greens candidate for the Upper Hunter, Councillor Sue Abbott to meet with local farmers facing the prospect of the Hunter Gas Pipeline running through their property and to state the Greens opposition to the pipeline.
Ms Faehrmann also used the visit to announce her intention to introduce legislation that would ban all coal and gas mining and exploration in the Liverpool Plains when parliament resumes on 2 May, which will include the Vickery extension projects.
The pair also held an open community ‘meet and greet’ in the Qurindi CWA rooms to chat with locals about Greens policies for the upcoming Upper Hunter by-election.
“The Greens have stood with the Liverpool Plains community for well over a decade fighting big coal and gas projects which all would have spelled disaster for this community which relies upon beautiful rich and healthy soils and unpolluted water to feed the nation,” said Cate Faehrmann Greens MP and spokesperson for the Environment.
“We can’t trust the National Party to protect farmers from the fossil fuel industry. They’ve handed $362 million to Shenhua Watermark after renewing their lease last year just to cancel it at huge expense to the taxpayer and years of hard work by the community fighting it. The National Party has always prioritised their mates in the coal and gas industries over protecting the land, water, cultural heritage and environment of the Liverpool Plains.
“Legislating a ban on coal and gas will give certainty to farmers and the community who have spent many stressful years with this project hanging over their head.
“Now finally, with a tight by-election looming, the National Party leader John Barilaro has stated publicly that it’s the end of coal mining on the Liverpool Plains. It’s a pity for the community who have spent thousands of hours and even more dollars fighting to protect their land and water that this didn’t come years earlier.
“However I say to all parties today, if you are committed to seeing no new coal and gas projects on the Liverpool Plains then I look forward to you voting in support of the Greens bill in a couple of weeks time,” said Ms Faehrmann.
“Nobody wants this gas pipeline running through their properties because the same black soil that makes this prime agricultural land also makes it a terrible place to bury a gas pipeline. The pipeline would see massive erosion that could lead to catastrophic failure,” said Sue Abbott.
“Once a gas pipeline is operational in this region then the risk of coal seam gas exploration and production being approved by this government, or any future government for that matter, is too great. If the National Party is serious about protecting farmers, then they must not approve this disastrous project.
“Hunter Gas’s own report acknowledges the ‘significant risks’ of building a pipeline on the Liverpool Plains that would put our lives, farmland and environment all at risk,” said Sue Abbott.