A planned gas pipeline through the Scenic Rim to Ipswich and Swanbank appears to have been dealt a final blow, with the announcement today that New South Wales coal seam gas company Metgasco is indefinitely suspending its operations in the Northern Rivers region.
Lock the Gate - the alliance of communities against inappropriate mining - says the Metgasco decision is a huge vindication of the efforts of thousands of people across the region to protect their land, water and communities from the threat of coal seam gas.
"Over the past 2 years people from all walks of life have become engaged in the issue, working to stop gas in our regions and to prevent the pipeline from being built," said Cassie McMahon, Lock the Gate Community Outreach Co-Ordinator for South East Queensland.
"Last year Scenic Rim residents Linda Weston and Cameron Mitchel walked the route of Metgasco's proposed pipeline to raise awareness of potential negative impacts on farmlands, health and water. Metgasco later withdrew its pipeline planning application on technical grounds, but the threat remained.
"Today's announcement is reassurance for Scenic Rim and Ipswich residents that the pipeline is even more unlikely."
With the taste of success from strong united community opposition, Ms McMahon said she believed residents of Scenic Rim and Ipswich would continue to campaign against planned gas and coal mines for the region.
"CSG Free Community surveys are continuing to gain momentum in our areas, including the Croftby, Ebenezer and Bremer Views regions -- and our alliance under the banner of Lock the Gate is the fastest social movement Australia has ever seen. It attracts all walks of life and this announcement indicates that people power does work."
Cassie McMahon will be speaking about why people power through locking the gate is the best option people have to protect our land, health and water at the Sustainability Showcase on Wednesday 20th March.