I feel compelled to comment on the responses of out prospective councillors to last week’s (CVI 3/11/21) “Vox Pop” question on the mining issue. I applaud Chris Gulaptis for being one of the few to voice an opinion against the “mob”.
Councillor Toms states “I accept it looks like a NIMBY attitude” – this is exactly what it is – a selfish attitude based, particularly in this case, largely on ignorance. So often do we hear “I’m not opposed to mining … but …”.
I acknowledge that accidents do happen in the mining industry – this is the exception rather than the rule and always receives great publicity. The dreadful dam wall collapse in 2015 of Samarco in Brazil springs to mind. However, for one respondent to suggest that these events happen “all too frequently” is nonsense.
Accidents happen not only in the mining industry but in all walks of life. Inevitably, an inquiry follows such accidents and recommendations are put in place in an attempt to prevent or minimise the possibility of such accidents happening again. Operational and risk management procedures are constantly improving in all industries and not only the mining industry.
Of course, the environment of the Clarence River Valley needs to be protected at all cost. But so too does the environment of our neighbour’s backyard and the environment of our remote deserts, forests and oceans. We need to put some faith in our planning and development systems to apply appropriate controls and manage risk.
Robin Knight, Yamba