Local Govt | National News Video | Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Search

 

Southland lignite proposals “100% stupidity”

Southland lignite proposals “100% stupidity” Aussie farmer tells meeting

Gore - January 20, 2013 - The idea of digging up fertile farmland for lignite coal is “100% stupidity,” an Australian farmer told a Southland meeting today.
 
Rob McCreath was addressing the “Keep the Coal in the Hole” summer festival in Gore.  The Queenslander told the 150-strong gathering how his community group, Friends of Felton, stopped a large coalmine and petrochemical plant from going ahead on prime agricultural farmland on the Darling Downs.
 
He has been in Dunedin and Southland for the last few days and was struck by the beauty of the farmland in the area.
 
“It’s hard to imagine a more productive farming area as I’ve seen in Southland.  In Australia we are peppered with New Zealand’s 100% Pure adverts.  It’s disgraceful that you have a government-owned company and they’re allowing it to dig up this beautiful farmland. That’s 100% stupidity,” said McCreath.
 
Five years ago, coal company Ambre Energy was set on digging a 2000ha opencast mine that would produce 8 million tonnes of coal a year from the Felton Valley and building a petrochemical (coal to liquids) plant there.
 
Friends of Felton occupied the state premier’s office, marched to parliament, erected giant billboards along roadsides, and established a local food festival as part of their successful five-year battle against the coal miners.
 
Just last week Ambre Energy admitted it would no longer be pursuing its mining plans in the Felton valley.
 
This year’s Keep the Coal in the Hole festival was organised by the Southland Coal Action Murihiku group, and had a more local focus, with many people from the local area coming to the three-day gathering.
 
"We face the very same threat here with the Southland lignite proposals still in Solid Energy's sights," said Tim Jones of Coal Action Network Aotearoa.  "We can learn from our Aussie neighbours how to work together to safeguard our food producing farmland."
 
The meeting also heard the latest on climate change from science writer Gareth Renowden, who told the members of the audience that anybody under 36 years old had not experienced a year below global average temperatures.  The real impacts of climate change were yet to come. 
 
“We're hitting the climate bell with a very big hammer and it hasn't really begun to ring yet."
 
He warned that, in a climate-changed future, coal could be deemed a liability in the future, rather than the “asset” it is seen as today.
 
This year’s festival has been celebrating the success of the coal action movement over the last year, where a number of new groups have sprung up around the country, with a big boost in membership. 

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines


Gordon Campbell: On National’s Ongoing Problems With Abortion


Despite Christopher Luxon’s assurances to the contrary, there is no such thing as “settled law” in New Zealand. Apart from the six provisions that are constitutionally entrenched, legislation can always be amended or overturned by a simple majority vote within our single chamber of Parliament. Luxon’s repeated use of the term “settled law” has been particularly tone deaf, given that several of the US Supreme Court justices used that very same term during their confirmation hearings...
More>>



 
 

Government: New Measures To Help Manage COVID-19 As Country Stays At Orange
The Government is taking action to help reduce the spread of COVID-19 in schools and early childhood services, COVID-19 Response Minster Dr Ayesha Verrall and Associate Education Minister Jan Tinetti announced today... More>>

Prime Minister: Remarks At NATO Summit
It is a rare thing to have New Zealand represented at a NATO Summit. While we have worked together in theatres such as Afghanistan, and have been partners for just on a decade, today represents an important moment for our Pacific nation... More>>

Government: Joint Press Release With President Of The Govt Of Spain Pedro Sánchez & PM Of New Zealand
On June 28, 2022, a meeting took place in Madrid between the President of the Government of the Kingdom of Spain, Pedro Sánchez Pérez-Castejón, and the Prime Minister of New Zealand, Jacinda Ardern, who was visiting Spain... More>>



Greens: Alcohol Harm Minimisation Bill Pulled From Biscuit Tin

After years of research and advocacy, Parliament will finally consider legislation to take meaningful action on alcohol harm, says the Greens... More>>


Government: Wellington’s Rapid Transit Option Progresses To Next Stage
The Government is progressing a preferred option for LGWM which will see Wellington’s transport links strengthened with light rail from Wellington Station to Island Bay... More>>


NZ Republic: Charles CHOGM Speech Green Light For Change
“Prince Charles had made it clear in his speech to the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM) in Rwanda today that even the Royal family think it’s time for change” said Lewis Holden, campaign chair of New Zealand Republic... More>>


 
 
 
 
 
 

LATEST HEADLINES

  • PARLIAMENT
  • POLITICS
  • REGIONAL
 
 

InfoPages News Channels