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Greens call for a freeze on all NSW coal project approvals

Media Release
Lee Rhiannon 5 May 2014

MEDIA RELEASE
5 May 2014

Greens call for a freeze on all NSW coal project approvals

Responding to revelations at ICAC that Nathan Tinkler's company Buildev paid 20k to the National Party, Greens spokesperson for Democracy Senator Lee Rhiannon has called for a halt to all current coal developments in NSW.

"ICAC has clearly shown us that both sides of politics at a State and Federal level are in bed with the coal industry," said Senator Rhiannon.

"The NSW planning process is deeply compromised - we've seen MPs resigning and revelations about donations intended to push the coal industry's agenda.

"The Greens are calling for the assessment processes for all coal related projects to be frozen until conclusion of the ICAC inquiries and the recommendations are made public.

"If it weren't for the undue and undemocratic influence of coal barons like Nathan Tinkler, Newcastle could have a new container terminal by now, setting up the infrastructure to support increased manufacturing and a transition to a sustainable economy.

"On the Central Coast, we saw an extraordinary backflip from Barry O'Farrell on the Wallarah 2 coal project - the proponents of which employed O'Farrell's wine donor, Nick di Girolamo.

"These cases show that the planning process for coal projects cannot be trusted and they should be frozen, until the public can be assured otherwise.

"Until the public can be assured that the assessment process is not corrupt, all coal approvals should be frozen.

"Wallarah 2 and the T4 coal terminal are among a range of coal projects currently awaiting assessment, which are bad for the environment, bad for the community and bad for the transition to a sustainable economy.

"The Federal and NSW government needs to stop governing for the coal industry and start governing for the people of NSW," Senator Rhiannon said.

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