Public hearing on Wallarah 2 coalmine plan

THE first of a series of public hearings on the Wallarah 2 Coal Project will be held at Wyong Golf Club on Wednesday, April 2.

The independent Planning Assessment Commission (PAC) will host the hearing as part of its review of the proposed coalmine west of Wyong.

The hearing will start at 9.30am and is open to the public.

The state government's planning department has given the project preliminary approval, subject to conditions.

The department concluded that there were no environmental or amenity reasons to prevent the project proceeding.

The assessment process involves further reviews and reports, including federal government consideration.

Locals planning to speak at the April 2 hearing must register before the event.

Written submissions are also being taken.

To register, phone Rebeca Chungue on 9383 2112 or email pac@pac.nsw.gov.au.

Greens up the ante

THE Central Coast Greens have stepped up their opposition to the mine.

They have called on the state government to suspend the Wallarah 2 assessment process, and cancel the April 2 public hearing because of two public inquiries announced by the Independent Commission Against Corruption into alleged corruption involving public figures linked to the project.

‘‘While any of the main players remain under investigation by ICAC, the project should be halted,’’ Central Coast Greens Kate da Costa said. NSW Greens upper house MP Jeremy Buckingham last week introduced a bill to ban mining from Central Coast water catchments.

The bill could pass the upper house later this month, with Labor and the crossbench expected to support it, forcing the government to use its numbers to block it in the lower house.

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