BY ALICE PEART.
Mining company Gloucester Resources have confirmed they will not be appealing the decision by NSW Land and Environment Court in February this year which rejected the proposal for an open-cut mine in the Gloucester Valley.
The company released a short statement saying the Rocky Hill coal mine will not proceed.
Chief Judge Brian Preston’s decision earlier this year became a landmark ruling when he took into consideration the unacceptable impact of greenhouse gas emissions and their likely contribution to climate change. A first for Australia.
Significantly the ruling rejected the argument of ‘market substitution’ which has been frequently used by mining companies, such as Adani, to counter environmental concerns.
Market substitution argues that if a given company does not mine and sell coal, someone else will.
Preston’s ruling however claimed “the market substitution argument is..flawed” particularly in the context of global movement against climate change.
The community group Gloucester Groundswell, who campaigned against the proposed mine for a decade, have received the news with “a big smile” according to their chairperson Julie Lyford.
Their fight however is not yet over with Gloucester Resources stating they will continue to carry out further assessment of its current exploration licences in the area.
Ms Lyford says Groundswell will now petition the NSW Government to get rid of the licenses which were apart of the Rocky Hill proposal and refrain from approving any new coal mines or expansion of coal mines in the Gloucester Valley.