Way back in the 1970s when the mullet hairdo was just becoming fashionable and Neville Wran was the Premier of NSW, turning quiet rural communities into industrial sites was all the go.
At that time it was considered vital to progress our state and our region through industrialisation.
Whether you agree with this or not – it happened. But that was 40 years ago and one would think our planners and government representatives would have moved with the times.
Unfortunately a bit like the mullet lovers they haven’t; our planning departments are stuck in a time warp while the communities they are supposed to shape for the future have to endure their out of date decisions.
Where is the planning that thinks approving a rural subdivision adjacent to a future open cut mine mine makes any sense – think Gloucester.
Why put in jeopardy one of the world’s leading thoroughbred regions for another open cut mine – think Jerrys Plains.
The only time planners and politicians listened to our communities was over the development of coal seam gas. So how come they listened then, and you can add the decision to buy back the Caroona mine licence from BHP Billiton last month, as another rare case of a community win in the planning process.
Otherwise it’s all downhill with the planners and the politicians sticking to their industrialisation at all cost philosophy.
NSW seems very backward in protecting iconic farming areas. South Australians have ring fenced the Barossa and McLaren Vale - same for Western Australia’s Margaret River.
Not so in NSW – here we seem to think you can develop anything anywhere and it won’t impact on the neighbours. Except perhaps for some special addresses in the Sydney.
Well its about time the planners caught up and started to think about our future, protect our soils, water and iconic rural industries many of which have been fashionable longer than the mullet.