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scorched earthA Federal Court judgement made on Thursday, July 8, that found the Australian Government must assess the risk to future generations of emissions from burning fossil fuels, has been welcomed by the Central Coast’s Climate Future group.

“This ruling will hopefully demonstrate that the Australian Government, including the Prime Minister and Environment Minister, have a personal responsibility to consider the risks posed to young people by climate change,” said Climate Future Chair, Richard Weller.

“It is clear that our Federal Court understands the gravity of the climate emergency we are facing and is sending a strong message to our political leaders to think deeply about the consequences of approving any new coal mines or mining expansions,” Mr Weller said.

“Judge Mordy Bromberg has ruled that before Whitehaven Coal Ltd is permitted to extend its Vickery coal operation in NSW, the Environment Minister, Sussan Ley, must assess the consequences of additional greenhouse gas emissions from the coal produced,” he said.

To quote from the Bromberg judgement – ‘The risk of harm that the minister must take reasonable care to avoid is personal injury or death to the children arising from the emission of carbon dioxide from the burning of coal extracted from the extension project’.

“Judge Bromberg is not alone in his judgement as climate campaigns in many countries turn to their courts for legal recognition of the intergenerational risks posed by the burning of fossil fuels,” Mr Weller said.

“In May The Hague ruled that Royal Dutch Shell Plc must cut emissions faster than planned and many other climate actions are pending in courts around the world,” he said.

“This judgement will hopefully act as a precedent for the examination of future coal projects by the Australian Government.

“His judgement specifically referred to a duty of care in relation to ’emissions of carbon dioxide into the Earth’s atmosphere’ so it could apply to any project with emissions that needs approval under the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation (EPBC) Act.

“This precedent makes it clear that our government must commit to cutting emissions and do so at an accelerated pace.”

CEN News Headlines

  • Crouch and Stokes must stop planning proposal that could clear environmental land

    NSW Minister for Planning Mr Rob Stokes MP and the Parliamentary Secretary for the Central Coast Mr Adam Crouch MP must stop a Central Coast Council planning proposal that could see privately-owned environmental land rezoned and cleared. CEN’s newly-elected Chair, Mr Gary Chestnut, said he encouraged all residents that live

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  • Federal ruling shows courts understand climate emergency

    A Federal Court judgement made on Thursday, July 8, that found the Australian Government must assess the risk to future generations of emissions from burning fossil fuels, has been welcomed by the Central Coast’s Climate Future group. “This ruling will hopefully demonstrate that the Australian Government, including the Prime Minister

    Read More
  • Council Inquiry must probe disastrous accounting change

    A voluntary change to accounting practices adopted by the first Central Coast Council Administrator in 2016 was disastrous for the new council and must be examined as part of the Public Inquiry being conducted by Roslyn McCulloch. Chair of the Community Environment Network (CEN), Mr Gary Chestnut, said the group

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  • Open Letter to Prime Minister calls for Climate Change leadership

    Climate Future has written an Open Letter to Prime Minister Scott Morrison (and sent a copy to every Federal and NSW parliamentarian) pointing out that as the leader of the country he has a duty of care to protect its children from the consequences of climate change. Climate Future Chair,

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  • Refusal of Springfield subdivision welcome

    The Community Environment Network (CEN) supports the Central Coast Council’s recommendation to refuse an application for a four-lot subdivision on environmentally valuable land at 35 to 45 Clarence Road, Springfield. “CEN hopes the Local Planning Panel adheres to the recommendation and refuses this proposal when it meets on Thursday,” said

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  • CEN will continue to campaign against community and environmental asset sales

    The Community Environment Network (CEN) has thanked Central Coast Council Administrator, Mr Rik Hart, for making it clear that he will not be reclassifying Community Land as part of Council’s asset sales program “unless absolutely necessary”. “Those were Mr Hart’s words and CEN will do our best to hold him

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  • List of Council-owned assets in order of suitability for sale

    CEN has ranked the operational assets that Central Coast Council has put forward as potentially for sale from most suitable to least. Read here for the full story. Page 1                                          

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  • Plant a tree this World Environment Day

    Saturday, June 5, is World Environment Day and the Community Environment Network (CEN) is inviting all Central Coast residents to do something positive for the environment by planting a tree. It may shock the community to learn that each month locals make applications to Council to remove around 40 trees

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  • Walk to celebrate World Environment Day

    Join Central Coast Waterwatch on Friday, 4 June 2021 at 10am to celebrate World Environment Day. Come on a guided walk along the Berkeley Vale foreshore and learn about your local waterway and wetland ecosystems with Central Coast Council’s Estuary Management Officer. Learn about the work being done by Council

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  • VEGETATION LOSS DUE TO JOHN WHITEWAY OVER-DEVELOPMENT WILL BE ‘DENUDING AND UNSIGHTLY’

    Proposed amendments to the State Significant Development (SSD) at 89 John Whiteway Drive, Gosford, although welcome, will not address the excessive bulk and scale of the proposal or the substantial loss of vegetation, according to the Community Environment Network (CEN). “The developer has argued the former quarry on the site

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  • CEN calls for Local Planning Panels to monitor excessive variations to planning standards

    The Community Environment Network (CEN) has called for audits and penalties to stop excessive development variations through over-use of Clause 4.6 of the Standard Instrument LEP (NSW’s uniform planning tool). In its submission to the Review of Clause 4.6 of the Standard Instrument LEP, CEN said the use (and abuse)

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  • NSW Government must make pollution and health data available for clean air strategy to be credible

    The Community Environment Network (CEN) has urged the NSW Government to integrate National Pollution Inventory (NPI) data with known rates of Upper Respiratory Tract Infections (URTI) on the Central Coast to measure the full impact of power station fallout on the local population. CEN Executive member, Mr Mike Campbell OAM,

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  • Hydrogen hubs and carbon capture no fix for climate - Climate Future

    Prime Minister Scott Morrison’s recent announcement on the Central Coast that his government will spend a total of $539 million on five hydrogen hubs and carbon capture projects will not be sufficient to handle the climate emergency. Climate Future Chair, Mr Richard Weller, said “We do need a hydrogen industry

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  • Planning Minister must refuse proposal to rezone environmental land

    The Central Coast Community Better Planning Group (CCCBPG) and the Community Environment Network (CEN) have urged NSW Minister for Planning and Public Spaces, The Hon Rob Stokes MP, to refuse a planning proposal from Central Coast Council. Chair of CCCBPG and Executive Member of CEN, Mr Gary Chestnut, said he

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  • Battle to save community land begins now

    The Community Environment Network (CEN) has welcomed the decision by Central Coast Council to give the community three weeks to provide feedback on its plan to reclassify, rezone and then sell off 27 lots of community land. “This proposed land sale includes parcels from Norah Head and Toukley in the

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  • Community Better Planning Group calls for action on coal ash inquiry findings

    The Central Coast Community Better Planning Group (CCCBPG) has called for a review of the population growth projections for the northern area of the Central Coast due to recommendations from the NSW Legislative Council’s report Costs for remediation of sites containing coal ash repositories and the limited water exchange of

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  • CEN supports Conservation Agreement for Porters Creek Wetland but wants maps clarified

    CEN has made the following submission to Central Coast Council regarding its recent exhibition of maps related to a proposed Conservation Agreement with the NSW Biodiversity Conservation Trust (BCT) which should see the wetland protected permanently. CEN has been advocating for the permanent protection of Porters Creek Wetland for the

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  • CEN's submission on mountain biking in COSS

    EXECUTIVE SUMMARY Unlawful and substantial environmental damage - illegal mountain bike activity in council-owned reserves is causing substantial environmental damage that needs to be addressed but we do not believe that opening up reserves as sanctioned local or regional mountain bike facilities is the answer. Discussion paper omissions – not enough information

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  • Call for nominations - CEN 2020 BAT Awards

    Do you know somebody who has… stood their ground at the crease...deflected the assault from their opponents...and remained steadfast in protecting their wicket…. all in the interests of the environment? Then we would like to acknowledge them as part of the team. CEN is calling for nominations for the following

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  • Mountain Bike Feasibility Study Discussion Paper Submissions

    The Central Coast Council's consultation for the Mountain Bike Feasibility Study Discussion Paper closes on Monday, 22 March, 2021. It's not too late to make a submission. If you feel strongly about the need to protect biodiversity in Central Coast Council's reserves, particularly in COSS lands, use our submission template

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