The NSW Land and Environment Court has commenced a hearing for an urgent injunction to stop operational clearing in the Leard Forest at a hearing in the NSW Land and Environment Court.
The injunction application began yesterday afternoon at 3:30pm at the NSW Land and Environment Court in Sydney.
Lock the Gate’s Carmel Flint told Echonetdaily that owing to the late start yesterday afternoon the case will be continuing today.
‘Our barristers put their opening arguments by which time the court was due to close so the case was adjourned until 10am this morning. So it’s still hanging in the balance.
‘We will be hoping that the judge makes a decision today to place an injunction on the work and stop the clearing,’ she said.
The Maules Creek Community Council (MCCC) are arguing that work should stop at least while current court proceedings against Whitehaven Coal, relating to winter clearing in the forest, are underway.
Late on Friday the MCCC, represented by law experts EDO NSW, launched legal action to stop clearing of the Leard Forest for the Maules Creek Coal Mine near Narrabri in north-west NSW.
The civil enforcement proceedings argue that Whitehaven is in breach of its development consent by clearing the forest during the winter months when animals, including threatened species, are hibernating.
Spokesman for the MCCC Phil Laird said, ‘We believe that the clearing of Leard Forest during the winter months is unlawful and while that legal argument is heard in court, work at the site needs to cease.
“We are seeking an urgent injunction to stop the bulldozers from flattening anymore of this unique and fragile ecosystem.’