Premier shrugs off Jones' noose comment

July 13, 2017

Breakfast radio titan Alan Jones has taken Gladys Berejiklian to task over a NSW mine.

NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian had a heated face-off with radio shock jock Alan Jones over her government's decision to scale back a controversial coal mine licence in the state's north.

The premier raised her voice several times during the Thursday morning interview, as the 2GB host accused her of an "unprecedently stupid" decision.

The government's plan involves taking back prime agricultural land from Chinese-owned coal company Shenhua Watermark in the Liverpool Plains in regional NSW.

Jones, 85, warned the premier her decision to not completely cancel the licence would cost her politically.

"You have put your head in a noose and my view is, once the truckies and the farmers start, that noose will be tightened," he said.

Jones also accused the government of "renewing" Shenhua's exploration licence in February.

Ms Berejiklian rejected this, saying the licence was "extinguished" and no mining would take place in the region, while any exploration of the surrounding ridges would need approval.

"As you know, and you'll get angry again for me raising this, but there is no mining licence," she said.

"Is there more too do? Of course there is."

The Berejiklian government on Wednesday announced it would refund $262 million to Shenhua to buy back more than half of the company's coal exploration licence to protect the region's renowned fertile soil from future mining.

Critics say the ridge lands - which weren't part of the buyback - are still at risk.

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