Why have Federal Labor ‘gifted $50,000 to Corazon Mining to continue drilling operations at the junction of the Mann and Clarence Rivers’ is the question being asked by the Clarence Catchment Alliance (CCA).
This question is particularly relevant considering during last year’s Federal elections ‘every candidate for electorate for Page at the 2022 federal election, support[ed] the call for an end to mining activities in the Clarence River catchment,’ said the CCA in a press release.
‘Residents of the Clarence, who have made their opposition to mining exploration in their catchment very clear, need to know that the Federal Government has recently gifted $50,000 dollars to Corazon Mining, by way of an Innovation Connections Grant, to continue drilling operations at Mt Gilmore west of Grafton at the junction of the Mann and Clarence Rivers,’ said the CCA.
‘This is hard-earned taxpayers’ money and comes on top of 200,000 taxpayer dollars provided to the same company by way of a co-drilling grant a year earlier.’
Labor supported ban
A petition with 11,000 signatures opposing mining in the catchment was lodged and debated in NSW parliament last year. It was backed by the Clarence Valley Council and five other neighbouring councils. Labor along with the Shooters, Farmers and Fisher, and The NSW Greens all spoke in support of a ban being brought in; Mr Chris Gulaptis, the sitting National member, spoke in favour.
‘Clearly, mining has no social licence in the Clarence catchment, and it is equally clear that existing exploration licence holders are aware of that fact and, as a result, have steadfastly refused to consult with concerned resident groups for the past four years,’ said TCCA.
The CCA say they have been clear with both mineral exploration licence holders and mining lease owners in the catchment that they do not have a ‘a social licence’ fro the community for this exploration or mining,’ say the CCA.
They sent a mail out early in the new year ‘However, indicative of the contempt for residents’ concerns, that has been a feature over the past four years, not a single response has been received and, more significantly, 10 per cent have been returned to sender unopened, with Australia Post being unable to find the address.’
‘Enough is enough. There is a state election looming, so if you want your rivers, drinking water and ocean protected, not to mention our beautiful hinterland scenery, and species, find a candidate that will fight for a mine-free Clarence catchment and vote accordingly.’
The Clarence would be an ideal location for a hydro electric dam to feed into the grid for the size of it’s catchment area and it might help slow the speed of flood waters, it’s amazing how much water moves down the Rocky and those other nearby rivers .
Correction: current local MP, Chris Gulaptis, and all other NSW Nationals MPs spoke against the petition.
With our headlong rush into renewables, someone has to secure the required minerals for dinky things like electric cars.
So expect more new mine proposals (and well-paid jobs) in the future – not less.