The ‘scars’ remain at the old Cangai mine smelting site. Image: CCA

Is mining to risky in the Clarence Valley?

Geoff Helisma|

The Clarence Catchment Alliance (CCA) is setting up in Market Square, Grafton, this Saturday October 18, for a public information drop-in session from 11am to 2pm.

With the premise that “water is precious” and that the Clarence River is potentially under threat from mining now and into the future – exploration is currently underway – alliance members will be on hand to speak about what is being proposed.

Alliance convenor Karen von Ahlefeldt said the “risk is just too high to allow mining to happen”.

“Whether people are for or against mining they need to know what could happen,” she said.

“The public can come and talk to us and then make up their own minds.”

Meanwhile, the alliance is continuing with its petition campaign, which aims to collect 10,000 signatures before a mining licence is granted so it can be given to Clarence MP Chris Gulaptis and submitted to the NSW state parliament.

Mr Gulaptis has previously said that he is “more than happy to submit the petition to parliament”.

“I understand the concerns about mining, given some companies have already breached their exploration licences,” he said.

“I won’t give unqualified support to ‘no mining’, but [if mining] does take place, it will have to meet high environmental standards and it must have a ‘social licence’.

“If [mining] does not meet those criteria I won’t support mining in the Clarence Valley.

“I don’t want to see the environment degraded.”

Ms von Ahlefeldt said CCA would hold similar information sessions in Yamba and Iluka over the coming months.