Hunter Valley residents vote to suspend coal mining expansions

More than 100 local Hunter Valley residents have unanimously voted to halt all coal mining expansions and developments surrounding the Upper Hunter town of Jerry’s Plains.

A community meeting held last night  discussed the cumulative impacts mining has had on the area, ABC reported.

Currently there are five mining proposals waiting for approval, all located within kilometres of Jerrys Plains and locals are worried their town will be destroyed.

Spokeswoman for the Hunter Communities Network, Bev Smiles said locals are now demanding action.

"There was a call for a moratorium on all coal mining proposals and development applications encircling Jerrys Plains until such time as the cumulative impacts are seriously taken into account," she said.

Organised by the community's Progress Association, the 'Jerrys in Jeopardy' meeting featured speakers from local stakeholders concerned about mine expansion in the region.

Smiles warned residents Jerrys Plains could face a similar fate to Wollar, another Upper Hunter town that was wiped off the map by mining activity.

"I informed the meeting about what happened to the community of Wollar that virtually has wiped it out," she said.

"In relation to a close open-cut coal mine and the way that noise impacts from that mine were not adequately predicted."

Just last week Australian Mining reported that Hunter Valley locals and environmentalists feared the continued expansion of coal mines in the area would damage the Hunter River, debilitate the region’s farming sector and hamper future growth of the local tourism industry.

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