At her recent address to the National Press Club, Environment Minister Sussan Ley disputed a Federal Court ruling that she has a duty of care to protect children against future injury from climate change.
The comments follow criticism of School Strike 4 Climate and eight "middle-class urban teens" - although two are actually from regional Australia - who took Ms Ley to court to try to stop her approval of the Vickery coal mine extension - very close to where my family farm is.
Crippling drought on my farm has caused my family to sell all of our cows. I have also watched as close friends have uprooted their livelihoods and sold their properties because of the impacts of the mining industry.
That's why I applaud city students standing up for us on this significant issue.
The impacts of coal mines in my hometown of Boggabri, in north-western NSW, are devastating - and it's not fair.
My family owns an 80-acre farm, as well as leasing country in the surrounding area, on which we run beef cattle.
Our farm is sandwiched between the proposed extension to the open-cut Vickery coal mine, around 30 kilometres to the south-east, and the planned Narrabri Gas Project, which will use fracking to extract gas, around 30 kilometres to the south-west.
It is terrifying to think that we may be forced to move away too, if more mines continue to be built in the area.
I'm glad there are people out there helping us draw attention to the social and environmental damage caused by mining and climate change.
There are just not enough kids out here in regional Australia that can express their opposition to these projects freely, like those in the city.
Many of my friends' family members work in mining and I don't want them to lose their livelihoods, but we just can't afford to be locked into only mining as our future. The sad fact is, with mining around, agriculture suffers.
While we appreciate the support of young people in the cities, more needs to be done at a local level to support our communities and create jobs that help us transition away from coal.
The Federal Court finding the Environment Minister has a duty of care towards young people on the issue of climate change last month was a good start, but I am hesitant to trust words alone.
This is because I have seen mines not being held accountable for their damaging social and environmental effects all too often. It will be a big step if the Environment Minister and governments do follow through on the court's findings.
But in the same case, the Federal Court didn't grant an injunction to stop the extension to the Vickery coal mine.
Right now is a crucial time - we need to stop this new mine before it gets going.
What the outcome of this court case tells us is that individual mines do have an impact. This highlights the need to focus attention on individual mines - just like the Adani movement.
I would like to see government officials and members of Parliament doing tours of regional towns that are being affected by coal mines, in order to see the environmental destruction and pollution that is happening.
They need to see the impacts first-hand.
The world is moving on from polluting and expensive coal and gas. It would be great to see the government supporting farmers and renewable energy projects instead of big fossil-fuel businesses, in order to develop jobs in other clean industries.
We are in danger because of the mines and gas projects popping up around us. If these projects continue to be approved, my family may have to sell our farm and move our entire livelihoods.
That doesn't sound fair to me.
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