The Blue Mountains Greens announced Blackheath resident Terry Morgan as their candidate to contest the seat of Macquarie at the next federal election.
Mr Morgan is an educator who has taught in primary and secondary schools with significant periods spent in remote Aboriginal communities. More recently, he has lectured in universities and adult education colleges
He now teaches Indigenous students at Western Sydney University.
“I am passionate about the fair and equitable funding of schools, TAFE and universities,” he said. “I joined The Greens because their policies on education, social justice and the environment are truly progressive.”
Mr Morgan said that residents of the Blue Mountains and the Hawkesbury deserve a representative in the Federal Parliament who put their interests first.
“Unlike Labor and the Liberals, the Greens do not accept donations from developers and big corporations, so we are able to represent ordinary people without fear or favour.
“Living in the beautiful Blue Mountains World Heritage Area is a great privilege, and it must be protected from inappropriate development.”
Mr Morgan said the proposed Western Sydney Airport at Badgerys Creek is a significant threat to the World Heritage listing of the Greater Blue Mountains area , as well as to the amenity of Mountains residents.
“The Greens policy is that High Speed Rail can provide the service and the jobs, without the massive overload of noise and pollution of a second airport.
“It will also create regional development along the rail line while a second airport will only continue to concentrate development in Greater Sydney. “
Mr Morgan said that current and previous governments have not been serious about tackling climate change “This is made clear by our shameful ranking at the Paris climate conference as the third worst performing nation on addressing the issue, with only Kazakhstan and Saudi Arabia scoring lower.
“Climate change is the biggest threat to our survival, and to the biosphere, in all human history. If elected as the Member for Macquarie, I will work to ensure that Australia plays its part to protect our living planet for future generations.
In collaboration with the Blue Mountains Refugee Support Group, we are co-organising a vigil on Monday night Vigil to stand for sanctuary.
- Where: Uniting Church Leura, Cnr of Grose and Megalong Streets
- When: 5.30-6.30pm, Monday 8 February 2016
- Bring: candles, flowers, songs and your personal messages to your fellow Australians who are also grieving this national shame.
This vigil is part of the ongoing campaign to put political pressure on the Turnbull Govt to allow the 267 asylum seekers, who were affected by the High Court’s decision last Wednesday, to stay in Australia.
It would be great if as many Greens members as possible can attend to support this.
Greens spokesperson for the Lower Blue Mountains, Joel MacRae, has slammed the Western Sydney Airport Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) and called for it to be withdrawn, or its consultation period extended, forthwith.
“Recent revelations that the EIS fudged the carbon emission numbers mean its credibility has to come under serious question.
The Executive Summary misled us all by quoting carbon emissions coming from the grounds of the airport only, excluding take-off flights. This is akin to measuring coal-fired power station emissions without the smoke!
In effect, some 2,524,504 tonnes of carbon emissions (over 2.5 million for 2030) coming from aircraft flying out of Badgerys Creek has been ‘overlooked’ in the Executive Summary, the part most people read when approaching a mammoth document like the EIS. Instead they said:
Greenhouse gas emissions from the Stage 1 development have been estimated to comprise 0.13 Mt CO2-e/annum, with the majority of emissions associated with purchased electricity. The Scope 1 and Scope 2 greenhouse gas emissions estimated from the proposed Stage 1 development would represent approximately 0.10 per cent of Australia’s projected 2030 transport-related greenhouse gas emission inventory. For this reason, it can be concluded the greenhouse gas emissions from the proposed airport would not be material in terms of the national inventory. (p.34)
A very glib dismissal! Except that the figure mentioned omits ‘Scope 3’ emissions, the most largest important element of an Airport: its jet plane exhausts! It is like evaluating the carbon imprint of an Expressway without the vehicle emissions! Someone is trying to hide something, and they surely must come clean with a figure which does show ‘material impact’ on the ‘national inventory’.
By 2060, the total emissions from aircraft at WSA will amount to a whopping 21 million tones per annum—and this will be at a time when most other transport agencies in Australia will be reducing their carbon imprint.
It is now clear that the EIS, like the proposed Airport itself, was a rushed project to fit a political agenda: to ‘gild the lily’ of an obnoxious airport they knew would be unpopular.
If they missed something basic like total ‘carbon emissions’, what about the other air pollutants like Nitrogen Oxide, Carbon Monoxide, Sulfur Dioxide, Benzine residue and particulate matter, much of which is toxic and can be deadly in excessive amounts.
What is more, the EIS blithely dismissed High Speed Rail as an alternative because it was ‘too expensive’, while at the same time they have not measured the long-term costs of an unhealthy airport.
High Speed Rail has zero emissions and will massively reduce the domestic flight pressures on Mascot Airport, which currently take up 60% of its passenger movements. Let’s dump this Airport, and dump its EIS as well.”
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Failed Prime Minister Tony Abbott sought to ‘slip around’ UNESCO when he announced the second Sydney Airport in April 2014.
Knowing full well how adjacent Badgerys Creek was to the Blue Mountains World Heritage Site (8 kms), Abbott pushed ahead with his bald announcement to develop the site for Airport purposes. The Murdoch media immediately became a cheer-squad for rapid development so that opposition could be steamrolled.
So intent were they on a rushed programme, Minister Truss even disavowed an Environmental Impact Statement, suggesting they could use the ‘old one’ from the 1990’s. Fortunately that stratagem was blocked by popular protest.
Meanwhile, one of the conditions stipulated by UNESCO’s covenant regarding Heritage Sites is that they must “…notify any intention of new construction—before basic documents are drafted or decisions made…”
Some six months after the original announcement, in January 2015, a UNESCO spokesperson in Paris reported the “ …World Heritage Committee hadn’t been informed the Abbott Government had revived the airport project..”
Even now, in its public listing of the World Heritage Site, UNESCO proclaims “…proposals for a second Sydney airport at Badgerys Creek…have been abandoned.”
There are three possible explanations of Coalition duplicity: 1) they are incompetent 2) they hold UNESCO, the World Heritage Site listing, as well as the Blue Mountains community, in total contempt or 3) they deliberately tried to ‘slide around’ any scrutiny from an outside scientific body…
Maybe it was, and is, all three. Nowadays, however, Mssrs Truss, Hunt, Markus et al are bending over backwards to prove several hundred jet planes flying at low altitudes 24/7 will have ‘minimal impact’ on Blue Mountains National Parks and our World Heritage listing—the EIS keeps repeating how harmless it all is.
Meanwhile, the Greens are writing to UNESCO to ensure their environmental scrutineers are fully aware of the situation, and that they examine the submissions against the Airport as much as the half-baked and much-discredited EIS from the Department Of Infrastructure.