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August 3, 2021

Greens want coal, gas political donations banned

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Tamara Smith, Greens candidate for the seat of Ballina in the 2015 NSW Election, is calling for political donations from coal and gas miners to be banned.
Tamara Smith, Greens candidate for the seat of Ballina in the 2015 NSW election, is calling for political donations from coal and gas miners to be banned.


Following yesterday’s announcement from state Labor that it would end all CSG mining in the northern rivers if elected, the Greens have ratcheted up the debate by calling on political donations from mining and gas companies to be banned.

The party currently has a bill before NSW parliament aiming to do just that.

Labor leader John Robertson will be in Lismore today to announce the new ALP policy, which would see CSG exploration ended in Kyogle, Tweed, Byron, Lismore, Ballina and Richmond Valley LGAs.

But Greens candidate for Ballina, Tamara Smith has re-affirmed her party’s commitment to banning CSG mining across all of NSW, not just in our region.

‘From Bentley to the Pilliga, from Glenugie to Gloucester, the Greens policy is clear: we are opposed to unconventional gas mining anywhere in NSW and support a rapid transition to clean, renewable energy’ said Ms Smith.

‘We’ve seen the corrupting influence that donations from coal and gas companies have had on NSW politics thanks to recent ICAC enquiries.’

She said that before the last election, more than $50,000 was donated to the ALP by energy giant AGL while they were seeking approval to drill 110 coal seam gas wells near Gloucester.

‘Similarly, the National Party has received over $95,000 from Santos, Arrow Energy, Chevron and the Australian Petroleum Production & Exploration Association since 2012,’ Ms Smith said.

‘How can regional communities take anything the Labor and National parties say about CSG seriously when they are still in the pockets of coal and gas companies?’ she queried.

NSW Greens mining spokesperson Jeremy Buckingham, a veteran of north coast CSG-free campaigns, echoed her sentiments.

‘While the Greens welcome the Labor Party’s announcement to ban unconventional gas in specific north coast council areas, it is disappointing that Labor are making their coal seam gas policy based on cynical electoral politics rather than basic principles of protecting land, water and communities everywhere in NSW,’ said Greens MP Jeremy Buckingham.

‘Labor were the party that unleashed coal seam gas across a third of NSW by issuing 39 exploration licences when they were last in power. Can Labor be trusted not to reverse this ban once the election is over?’ said Mr Buckingham.

Significantly, it appears that the new Labor Party policy has failed to protect residents living in Clarence Valley LGA, including those around Glenugie, near Grafton that was the site of a CSG community blockade in 2012-13.

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  1. How can the Nationals and Labor expect to be taken seriously when they have recently been accepting thousands of $$$$ from the CSG companies. The Greens are the only party that has been consistent on this issue.

  2. What to do when the local member Nationals David Gillespie, Best man and lifelong family friend of Tony Abbott is trusted with a Lock the gate petition bearing 10s of thousands of signatures, against CSG, which he legally has to table to parliament, and tables it to an empty house in the dead of night? This behavior forces those 10’s of thousands of honest, caring productive members of society, who trusted their local representative to do the job he is paid to do, into performing illegal acts of desperation to save their planet- yes? They are then called the criminals. $50,000 donated by AGL, Environmental vandals and liars who expect us to believe their propaganda, who are now fracking Gloucester. I for one am joining the Greens.


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