Bligh government’s ‘green corridor’ plan mostly a sham: Lock the Gate

Published: March 01, 2012

The Lock the Gate Alliance believes the only new and substantial environmental protections emerging from yesterday's 'green corridor' announcement by Premier, Anna Bligh, is for the far western rivers.

Everything else would seem to be recycling old projects and staying well clear of any mining tenements.

Lock the Gate Alliance president, Drew Hutton, said the biggest spin was contained in sections 3 and 4 of the Premier's four-section plan.

"The descriptions of the corridor are quite vague, and I would be keen to be corrected, but it seems that section 3 of the plan follows the Great Dividing Range south from the Carnarvon National Park.

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Lock the Gate calls for action against coal seam gas polluter

Published: February 23, 2012

The Lock the Gate Alliance is calling on the New South Wales government to take action against the directors of the coal seam gas company, Eastern Star Gas, in the aftermath of a report by its new owner, Santos.

Lock the Gate Alliance president, Drew Hutton, said former deputy-prime minister, John Anderson, and the other directors of ESG should be held accountable for  the 20 environmental incidents relating to waste management problems, over-clearing of bushland at up to 39 well sites, kangaroo deaths in water ponds, and high levels of salt in water discharged into creeks.

"On the face of it the company breached section 120 of the Protection of the Environment Operations Act 1997 which prohibits water pollution and carries a fine of up to $1 million," Mr Hutton said.

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Lock the Gate to shut down Acland coal dump

Published: February 19, 2012

The Lock the Gate movement will be shutting down the coal loading facility of New Hope Coal's Acland mine tomorrow (Monday 20 February).

The Lock the Gate Alliance is planning to march on the Acland mine coal dump situated at the edge of the Jondaryan township. This facility has been accused by Jondaryan residents of polluting their town and causing serious health problems.

The march will be headed by radio broadcaster, Alan Jones, Drew Hutton, president of the Lock the Gate Alliance, and many other prominent Queenslanders. These include Bob Katter, Aidan McLindon, Greens Senator Larissa Waters, Greens state spokesperson Libby Connors and other prominent Queenslanders.

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Newman flags free rein to the mining industry

Published: February 18, 2012

Cambell Newman's criticisms of the Department of Environment and Resource Management (DERM) have sent a shiver down the spine of every Queensland landowner who would like this department to keep closer control of the mining industry.

Mr Newman is quoted as saying he believes the environmental regulator is full of "green extremists" and needs to learn what its true function is.

Lock the Gate Alliance president, Drew Hutton, said his members found Mr Newman's comments disturbing.

"The Bligh government and the LNP opposition have stated many times that the coal seam gas industry will be kept under control by the number of conditions imposed on their activities and the preparedness of DERM to enforce these," Mr Hutton said.

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Pilliga Forest contaminated by coal seam gas

Published: February 09, 2012

Lock The Gate Alliance has recently received news of independent soil and water sample results from contaminated zones in the Pilliga forest near Santos' coal seam gas operation.

Drew Hutton, President of Lock The Gate said, "The testing, commissioned by environment groups and tested by an independent laboratory, contains disturbing information about the true impacts of coal seam gas and the appalling attitude of the coal seam gas companies."

"The results are incredibly disturbing. Santos reported that these areas were contaminated by a spill that occurred over 6 months ago, and have been blaming the spill and the subsequent cover up on the previous operator, Eastern Star Gas, while conveniently forgetting that at the time they owned a 20% stake in Eastern Star Gas," he said.

"But over that 6 months the region has had over 600mm of rain, so these results must be incredibly diluted and a pale shadow of the initial impact."

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