Filmmakers have painted the bleak future that the mining industry proposes for the Gardens of Stone NSW, and they have placed the onus of this becoming a reality on the NSW Government.
Conservation groups have proposed a large area of the Gardens of Stone for reservation. This proposal is currently undergoing a "whole of government" review by the NSW Government, but it is facing an increasing number of open-cut coal mining applications which, if approved, will destroy it.
After visiting the area and becoming smitten with its beauty, filmmakers felt compelled to create a mock news-item which reports: "Miners destroy part of Opera House and NSW Government gives it the OK". As viewers watch the world heritage Opera House engulfed in flames and smoke, they are left to contemplate their own response to the notion of the iconic Gardens of Stone area receiving the same treatment.
While this news item is not real, the footage showing damage to the Gardens of Stone landscape is.
Despite its sandstone pagoda structures being unique by world standards, past mines have caused significant cliff collapses and destruction. Yet mining companies have incurred few, if any significant fines for this and none have had their operating licenses terminated.
The Gardens of Stone reserve proposal covers an area of outstanding natural values. It looks to a future in which the region becomes linked to the Greater Blue Mountains World Heritage Area.
Approving a long list of mining proposals will consign its future to oblivion. This distressing thought drove the young film-makers to produce this work.
While it is unthinkable that the NSW government would permit mining activity which would harm the iconic Opera House, it is curious to note that government is contemplating the destruction of the iconic Gardens of Stone.
Conservation groups have called for the NSW Premier to step in and place the area into the conservation reserve system as a matter of priority.
Media Contact: Justin McKee 0404 824 020
Link to video: www.youtube.com/watch?v=o7pSlaoSRHg
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