Barnaby Joyce’s bold plan to fund divorce
Nationals backbencher Barnaby Joyce is selling a plot of farmland with coal-seam gas potential to fund his impending divorce from wife Natalie.
The 1015ha of land in Gwabegar in northern NSW has been listed with an asking price of $878,000.
It is covered by an unused coal-seam gas exploration license held by resources company Comet Ridge.
Mr Joyce has owned the estate since 2007, after joining two separate blocks together for a total $572,000.
Mr Joyce said he was now selling in the hope of freeing up cash for the divorce settlement.
"The unfortunate breakdown of the relationship means there has to be the necessary settlement to secure Natalie's position," he told The Australian.
Mr Joyce attracted controversy earlier this year when it was announced he had left his wife of 25 years for former staffer Vikki Campion. The couple's son was born in April.
He had pledged to sell the land five years ago after acknowledging a potential "conflict of interest" due to the petroleum exploration license.
The former deputy prime minister has said he wasn't aware of the exploration licence when he first bought the land.
The property price at $350 an acre "represents value for those looking for their first larger grazing block", according to the listing.
The land is being sold through Rural Property NSW agent Michael Guest and includes numerous dams and eight paddocks.
There is also a creek running through the property.