About 20 Upper Hunter residents gathered at Bylong this week to voice concern about the impacts of mining on their communities and their environment.
The meeting, part of a Greens listening tour, is gathering first-hand accounts of how communities are affected by exploration licences and current coal mine operations.
"The Greens do not support the proposed expansion of coal mining into the beautiful landscape around Rylstone or the proposal to surround the village of Wollar with expanded mining operations," Upper Hunter candidate Sue Abbott said.
"The Greens also do not support a coal mine at Bylong and commend the Independent Planning Commission and the NSW Land and Environment Court for rejecting the Kepco coal mine in the stunning Bylong Valley."
Landholders in the recently announced Hawkins-Rumker coal release area near Rylstone also spoke of their shock, uncertainty and concerns about potential mining impacts on their water supply, their land, amenity and neighbours.
They were also concerned about the impacts on the thriving tourism industry in the Rylstone region.
"They don't want their remote rural communities to suffer the same fate," Ms Abbott said.
"Releasing new areas for coal exploration in the Upper Hunter makes no sense. It threatens jobs in existing mines through increased market competition. It disrupts and disturbs more rural farming communities. It continues the threat of continued carbon emissions in an overheating world."
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Ms Abbott will visit Stanhope south of Singleton on Friday to meet with local farmers facing the prospect of the Hunter Gas Pipeline running through their property.
"We cannot trust the Coalition to protect farmers from the fossil fuel industry. The Coalition have always prioritised their mates in the coal and gas industries over protecting the land, water, cultural heritage and the environment of the Upper Hunter," Ms Abbott said.
"Nobody from the north of the electorate at Liverpool Plains to here in the south of the electorate at Stanhope wants this gas pipeline running through their properties because the same beautiful rich loamy soils which make this prime agricultural land also make it a totally unsuitable place to bury a gas pipeline."
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