Get to know your candidates: Roger Currie, Independent
WITH a solid and heartfelt belief in the wellbeing of the environment and the potential of Maryborough to be recognised as a State leader in the renewable energy sector, Independent candidate for Maryborough Roger Currie is determined to continue the campaign for a sustainable future.
"I think Maryborough could be quite economically sound if we manage it correctly. It could be a leader in Queensland,” Mr Currie said this week.
He said he was also committed to facilitating a healthy and thriving relationship between the Greens and farmers in the region, including reforming vegetation management.
"It's about time the greenies and the farmers got together and worked it out. We need to flip the whole thing about managing the bush properly on its head,” he said.
"Currently, it's not working for farmers, he said, "and I'm happy to turn it on its head and encourage farmers to protect biodiversity, and we pay them for it.
"Our farmers are essential, and we have to start respecting them and giving them a fair deal.”
Penrith-born Mr Currie said that if elected, he would focus on working effectively with farmers to help manage the landscape.
He said he would recommend paying farmers to protect the environment.
"We recognise that food is important. We can't eat coal and we can't eat concrete. We have to have farmers and we have to nurture them. And we need to put money in there to help them. I believe it's important.
"As a vegetation management consultant, I know the faults with the framework intimately, and I will introduce a private member's bill seeking to help farmers manage the land with incentives, and remove what we have now.”
He also believed farmers should not be blamed for damage to the Great Barrier Reef as "it is climate change which dictates when reefs must die, not mining and farming”.
Mr Currie, who came to Hervey Bay in 1975 after finishing military service, worked initially as furnace man at Walkers, and was an original member, treasurer and fullback for the Hervey Bay Seahawks Aussie Rules Club.
"I fell hopelessly in love with a beautiful barmaid at the Torquay pub, and am still married after 40 years,” he said.
The father of two now adult children, said he was best known as "that greenie, bikie-looking dude who whinges about the environment on the news a lot”.