Lo­cal far­mer e­lected to A­gri SA bo­ard

Graaff-Reinet Advertiser - - Graaff-reinet -

GRAAFF-REINET — Doug S­tern, P­re­si­dent of A­gri Eas­tern Ca­pe, was e­lected to ser­ve on the A­gri South A­fri­ca Bo­ard of Di­rec­tors at the re­cent A­gri SA Con­gress.

Mem­bers of A­gri Eas­tern Ca­pe, as well as S­tern him­self, are proud and ho­nou­red that he will be re­pre­sen­ting the in­te­re­sts of lo­cal far­mers at the hig­hest le­vel of or­ga­ni­zed a­gri­cul­tu­re.

S­tern was ap­pro­a­ched by the Graaff-reinet Ad­ver­ti­ser for com­ment on the re­cent hap­pe­nings re­gar­ding fracking and u­ra­ni­um mi­ning in the a­rea.

He was full of prai­se for the ster­ling work of lo­cal at­tor­ney De­rek Lig­ht, who has “mo­ved he­a­ven and e­arth” to fig­ht the fracking re­gu­la­ti­ons. S­tern has wor­ked clo­se­ly with Lig­ht o­ver the past se­ven to eig­ht y­e­ars and is thril­led that the De­part­ment of Mi­ne­ral Re­sour­ces’ fracking re­gu­la­ti­ons has been de­cla­red in­va­lid.

“We ha­ve won round one a­gainst fracking” he de­cla­red. “Had it go­ne a­he­ad, it would ha­ve for­med a foun­da­ti­on of con­ta­mi­na­ti­on of our wa­ter and land.”

He feels that the go­vern­ment show no re­spect for the en­vi­ron­ment, and e­ven less for a­gri­cul­tu­re or food se­cu­ri­ty. Two pro­blems that stand out with both fracking and u­ra­ni­um mi­ning in the Ka­roo are the scar­ci­ty of wa­ter and the fact that the­se o­pe­ra­ti­ons would put far­ming in the pro­vin­ce at risk. “A­gri­cul­tu­ral acti­vi­ty has been ta­king pla­ce in the a­rea for o­ver 200 y­e­ars” he ex­plai­ned. “Why put this at risk for a short-term e­ner­gy fix that would last on­ly 20-30 y­e­ars?”

The fact that all far­mers and ot­her in­te­rested par­ties in the Eas­tern Ca­pe “stood to­get­her to keep the mi­ning vul­tu­res at bay” gi­ves him a gre­at de­al of sa­tis­facti­on, and he is very proud of the o­ver­w­hel­ming sup­port re­cei­ved for Lig­ht and ot­hers op­po­sing the mi­ning and fracking o­pe­ra­ti­ons.

Doug S­tern, P­re­si­dent of A­gri Eas­tern Ca­pe.

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