Jeremy Buckingham

article - Jeremy Buckingham

Jeremy Nova Buckingham (born 22 November 1973 in Tasmania) is a former Australian politician. He was a member of the New South Wales Legislative Council from 2011 to 2019.[1] He was a Greens member from 2011 to 2018, but resigned from the party on 20 December 2018. He was unsuccessful in retaining his seat in the Legislative Council in the 2019 state election.

Australian politician
Australian politician

Jeremy Buckingham
Member of the New South Wales Legislative Council
In office
26 March 2011  23 March 2019
Personal details
Born (1973-11-22) 22 November 1973 (age 48)
Launceston, Tasmania, Australia
Nationality Australian
Political party Independent(2018–present)
Greens(until 2018)
Website Jeremy Buckingham MLC

. . . Jeremy Buckingham . . .

Buckingham was born in Launceston, Tasmania and spent his early life living in the historic homestead ‘Hillgrove’, adjacent to the Taroona Shot Tower site south of Hobart. He attended Taroona Primary, Taroona High School and graduated from The Hobart College. After school he spent two years working as a benchman in a small country sawmill run by Kim Booth (later a Greens member of the Tasmanian House of Assembly) in central Tasmania.[2]

In 1994 Buckingham fronted heavy metal band Amplifire as singer, with other band members including his brother Jessie ‘Tambo’ Buckingham, as well as Michael Kell and John Salter.[2][3]

Buckingham moved to Sydney in the mid 1990s, where he worked as forklift driver, hardware store salesman and builders’ labourer.

Buckingham relocated to Orange in the central west of New South Wales in 1997 with his wife Sarah,[4] where he worked as production manager for monumental stonemason McMurtrie & Co. In his time at the stonemason, Buckingham worked on public works such as the Australian War Memorial in London,[5] the Federation Square project and the Sydney Olympic Games site.

After a back injury rendered him unfit for heavy lifting,[6] Buckingham enrolled and completed an Advanced Diploma in Ecological Agriculture and Land Management at the University of Sydney, which he completed in 2006.[1] He continued to work as a stonemason until his election to state parliament in 2011.[4]

Buckingham unsuccessfully contested the state Legislative Assembly seat of Orange in the 2003 and 2007 state elections. Buckingham was elected to the City of Orange council in 2004 and re-elected with an increased vote in 2008. He was the first member of the Australian Greens elected to a council west of the Great Dividing Range. As a councillor, he implemented Australia’s first stormwater harvesting project for drinking water supply, initiated the city’s first statement of commitment to the Aboriginal community, fought against homophobia and for the rights of same sex couples, campaigned to protect an agricultural research station from developers, and fought to protect water supplies from the Cadia gold mine that operates on the outskirts of Orange.[citation needed]

Buckingham was elected convenor of the Central West Greens in 2008, a position which he held until 2011.[citation needed]

Buckingham was the sixth candidate on the Greens’ Senate ticket for the 2004 Australian federal election. He contested the lower house seat of Calare in the 2007 and 2010 federal elections without success.[7][8] Buckingham was then preselected to third spot on the Greens’ Legislative Council ticket in the 2011 state election. He was locked in a close race with Pauline Hanson and the Nationals for the final spots. After preferences were distributed he was elected with 2,437 votes ahead of Pauline Hanson, and 1,306 votes ahead of Sarah Johnston of the National Party.[9]

Since being elected, Buckingham has campaigned against the expansion of the coal and coal seam gas (CSG) industries in New South Wales and Australia. He has managed to build broad links across both sides of politics in the CSG campaign, and has made a personal ally of conservative radio show host Alan Jones who alongside Buckingham was sued by the former leader of the National Party (Andrew Stoner) for defamation.[10]

Buckingham initiated Australia’s first parliamentary inquiry into coal seam gas.[citation needed] Buckingham introduced bills into the NSW Parliament attempting to restrict mining. The “Coal Seam Gas Moratorium Bill 2011” sought a moratorium on the granting of exploration licences for coal seam gas.[11] The “Responsible Mining (Protecting Land, Water and Communities) Bill 2012” seeking to prohibit exploration and mining of minerals and petroleum in urban areas, National Parks, and drinking water catchments.[12]

Jeremy Buckingham & CSG pipe layer

For the Greens, he held the portfolios of Mining and Resources, Primary Industries, Trade and Investment, Regional Infrastructure and Services, Agriculture, Health and Sport.[13]

Alongside former Greens leader Christine Milne, Buckingham had set up a country arm of the Greens party and was convenor of the Australian Country Greens.[14]

In October 2016, Buckingham tabled a motion in response to U.S. presidential candidateDonald Trump‘s recently leaked statements. This included the phrase stating the NSW parliament “agrees with those who have described Mr Trump as ‘a revolting slug’ unfit for public office”. The president of the upper house, Don Harwin, found the term “revolting slug” was not unparliamentary language. The motion was passed.[15]

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