Friday, October 7, 2011

Nicole Kidman's Gas Problem

Bill Ranken
Social Shuttle contributor  Bill Ranken brings news of a well-heeled protest group-the Hunter Valley Protection Alliance- opposing coal seam gas mining in the chic and exclusive Southern Highlands where Nicole Kidman and Keith Urban have their country base, Bunya Hill.

Ranken , who with his sister Jean owns nearby Lockesley, regarded as one of the state's most glorious pastoral properties says they have been approached by mining companies wishing to set down gas exploration units on their land in return for a share of profits. Although the Ranken's have embraced windmills and solar power Bill says he would never contemplate gas plants on their property as they wreak destruction.

Bunya Hill
Gas mining corporations have been inundating the airwaves with friendly adverts depicting a small obscure gas unit surrounded by fluffy sheep and grazing cows on green hills.
Ranken says the adverts are misleading and gas mining sucks the life out of the earth.

Other residents of the beautiful Southern Highlands and the Hunter Valley with it's dozens of award winning vineyards are being approached says Ranken and the fear is that some will succumb to gas companies offers.

The protest group is hoping to encourage Nicole Kidman and Keith Urban along with other notables in the area including Harry Potter actress Miriam Margoyles , novelist Bryce Courtney, broadcaster Alan Jones, model agency boss Peter Chadwick, Federal Labor minister Peter Garrett and Nutremetic's founder Imelda Roche to join the protests.

Past Highland's residents have included Sir Donald Bradman and P.L.Travers the author of Mary Poppins. The protestors warn that just one gas mine in the area can drill under properties for miles, destroying nutrients in the earth above.

Don Bradman
Bowral resident Miriam Margolyes

 Yesterday came the news that the late Macquarie Bank boss, multi-millionaire and former Liberal party chairman David Clarke who passed away 6 months ago, had funded anti-gas campaigns with millions of dollars and spoke against the mining at local rallies.

Clarke owned the exclusive Poole's Rock vineyard in the Hunter and now his son has said that the executor of Clarke's estate BRI Ferrier has sold Poole's Rock to the gas company AGL without Clarke family knowledge and that AGL are trying to buy up vineyards and properties around the area.

A spokesman for the Hunter Valley Protection Alliance said Clarke, who had anti-mining posters throughout Poole's Rock would be "turning in his grave".