Rocla Sand Quarries to be sold at a huge loss

The Central Coast Greens have renewed their opposition to the extension of the Calga sand quarry in the wake of the sell-off by Fletcher Building of its Australian subsidiary business Rocla.

“The Central Coast Greens have campaigned strongly against irresponsible mining on the Coast and will continue to run our ‘Protect Our Water’ campaign as long as the catchments are at risk,” Central Coast Greens spokesperson, Ms Kate da Costa said. “We have seen how companies including Rocla have skirted around the edges of regulations and community consultation, risking the natural resources of the mountain and causing unnecessary stress to the community,” she said. The Development Application for the Calga extension is still before the Land and Environment Court. Hearings into damage to Aboriginal heritage and impacts on neighbouring businesses have taken considerable time. “New owners should expect the same amount of campaigning to halt the expansion of the Calga sand mining operations,” Ms da Costa said. “We will not be backing down and we stand fi rmly behind the community which is also opposing the extension on noise, dust, traffi c, environmental and heritage impact grounds,” she said. According to the Central Coast Greens, Rocla Sand Quarries is asking $200 million for the 15-site business, and has already taken fi rst round bids from a variety of trade buyers, with second round offers expected soon. The $530 million price paid by New Zealand based international company Fletcher Building to Amatex back in 2005, will be a $330 million dollar loss to the company if the sale goes through. “Any potential investors looking at purchasing Rocla should not underestimate the strength of community opposition to the massive Calga Quarry expansion which threatens the region’s water supply,” Greens MP and mining spokesperson Jeremy Buckingham said. “At the end of the day, Fletcher Building is free to sell their business to whomever they choose, however, The Greens will be letting any potential buyer know that they will have to get through the community first if they intend to expand the quarry at Calga.”

Media release, 12 June 2015 Kate da Costa, Central Coast Greens