On Friday, February 8, 2018 the New South Wales Land and Environment Court Chief Judge, the Hon. Justice, Brian Preston S.C, rejected an appeal by mining company, Gloucester Resources, to establish a new coal mine in the Upper Hunter Valley in New South Wales. This is a landmark case as it is the first time an Australia court has refused consent for a coal mine on the basis of its climate change impacts.
In expanding on the grounds of his decision, Justice Preston stated, in no uncertain terms, that his ‘wrong time’ decision addresses specifically the issue of a collective obligation to reduce global carbon dioxide emissions in line with Australia’s commitments to the Paris Agreement. As reported in the Guardian (www.theguardian.com), this is a significant win for the environment and local communities as it recognises climate impacts in a judgement against the coal and fossil fuel industry, and provides an established precedent moving forward.
The Environmental Defenders Office, which successfully represented the Gloucester Community, has outlined the significance of the decision on their website. Read more…. (www.edonsw.org.au/gloucester_climate_win)