Stop the mine FAQ



What is the Liverpool Plains?

The Liverpool Plains is often regarded as Australia's food bowl due to the quality and quantity of food that is produced in its rich black soils. Farmers on the Liverpool Plains produce food such as wheat (used in pasta, bread, cakes), corn, sunflower seed products, canola (oil), sorghum (flour), barley (beer malt), chickpeas, legumes, beef, lamb, wool and cotton. The Plains generally yield about 40% above the national average of food per hectare and contributes approximately $332 million GDP annually.


What's the Shenhua mine?

The Shenhua mine is a proposed open cut mine to extract 10 million tonnes of coal a year from the Liverpool Plains for 30 years.


Why should we 'stop the mine'?

  • "It's literally blowing up a 35-square-km hole in the heart of Australian agriculture," former NSW Farmers President Fiona Simson
  • The mine risks irreversibly disrupting groundwater systems that farmers rely on to produce food for Australia.
  • The mine will increase carbon pollution emissions and aggravate climate change when we should be transitioning to clean energy. 
  • The mine will destroy rich cultural heritage such as an important grinding groove site that is precious to the Gomeroi people


What does this have to do with my faith?

  • God loves us and calls us to be stewards of creation. When Australia's most precious farmland is at risk, its an act of love to protect what God has gifted us.
  • Climate change is harming people living in poverty today. To protect our neighbors from further harm we must transition to clean energy and move away from dirty energy. 
  • Jesus reconciles us with God and all of creation. As followers of Christ, we are to pursue friendship and reconciliation with first Australians. That includes advocating with Indigenous and Torres Strait Islanders for the preservation of their culture. 


Why now?

  • There is only a small window of time to build the public support necessary to stop the mine before the Federal Government gives final approval to start the mine. Shenhua could submit documentation to the Federal Government for final approval at any moment. 
  • Barnaby Joyce has been promoted to Deputy Prime Minster and maintains his position as Minister for Agriculture. His role is to represent farmers and has increased power to stop the mine. Asking Mr Joyce to play a lead role to stop the mine is one of best opportunities we have to save our food bowl. 


Save the burgers? Isn't animal agriculture part of the problem?

Intensive farming leads to high levels of carbon pollution released into the atmosphere. Common Grace supports ethical and sustainable farming practices and lifestyles. 


Has the Shenhua Watermark mine been approved?

The mine has been conditionally approved by the Federal Government. Shenhua is required to submit a water management plan and a biodiversity management plan for sign off by Environment Minister Greg Hunt. Shenhua also need to apply for and be granted a mining lease by the NSW Government.