Proposed legislation to remove climate change from coal and gas mine considerations must be dropped while the NSW bushfire inquiry is underway, according to Lock the Gate Alliance.
The Alliance has welcomed the inquiry, but argues that while it is underway, legislation must not be passed to remove climate change considerations from the planning system, as is proposed under the Territorial Limits Bill currently before the NSW Parliament.
“An inquiry into the summer’s bushfire crisis is very welcome, as is the inclusion in the terms of reference of the role of climate change in fuelling the catastrophe,” said Lock the Gate NSW spokesperson Georgina Woods.
“But the 'Territorial Limits' Bill that was introduced into NSW Parliament at the mining industry’s urging late last year will blindfold decision-makers to the role of NSW coal mines and gasfields in driving climate change and the extreme weather it fuels, like the recent bushfires.
“The Government must withdraw the Bill pending the outcome of the bushfire inquiry.
“We’re also deeply concerned the Bushfire Inquiry does not intend to hold any public hearings - NSW communities have been through hell this summer and they deserve the right to present evidence to this inquiry in a public forum.”
A public hearing into the effects of the Territorial Limits Bill will be held in NSW parliament in Thursday next week.