US EPA report on fracking shows why Australia must ban the practice

Published: December 09, 2011

The report by the US Environmental Protection Agency linking the practice of hydraulic fracturing (or 'fracking') will send shivers through the Australian coal seam gas industry.

The EPA found that compounds likely associated with fracking chemicals had been detected in the groundwater beneath a Wyoming community where residents say their well water smells of chemicals.

Fracking involves pumping millions of litres of water and sand and thousands of litres of chemicals under very high pressures into the coal seam in order to better release the gas trapped in that seam.

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First big victory to Lock the Gate

Published: December 05, 2011

The decision by coal mining company NuCoal to abandon plans to mine on the property of blind Hunter Valley farmer, Ian Moore, is the first major victory for the Lock the Gate campaign.

Mr Moore had locked his gate on the company Doyles Creeks Mining which was later purchased by NuCoal. The company then took Mr Moore to a government-appointed arbitrator who upheld the company's right to drill on the property.

Mr Moore then appealed to the Land and Environment Court which imposed much tougher restrictions on NuCoal but still upheld their right to enter the property.

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Gloucester Blocks the Gate on AGL

Published: December 05, 2011

A spontaneous blockade has been imposed on coal seam gas company AGL outside the Hunter Valley town of Gloucester.

Local residents, alarmed at the entry of trucks carrying heavy equipment onto a local property where a coal seam gas rig was expected in the near future, scrambled to blockade the trucks.

Lock the Gate Alliance president Drew Hutton said local community groups opposed to coal seam gas development in the Gloucester Valley were mounting the blockade.

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Lock the Gate president in court next Wednesday

Published: December 01, 2011

President of the Lock the Gate Alliance, Drew Hutton, will appear in the Dalby Magistrates Court next Wednesday charged with obstructing a coal seam gas company.

The court case is set down for the 7th and 8th December in the Dalby Magistrates Court, corner Drayton and Cunningham Streets. Media are invited to attend for the midday press conference and rally on Wednesday 7th.

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Lock the Gate vindicated by Senate inquiry: time for a royal commission

Published: November 30, 2011

Today's release of the Senate MDBC committee into coal seam gas vindicates the stance taken by the Lock the Gate Alliance over the past twelve months.

The report calls for such measures as a moratorium on all further approvals of CSG projects in the Murray Darling Basin until all necessary scientific studies have been completed, although it does not call for a moratorium on all projects as the Alliance has demanded.

Lock the Gate Alliance president, Drew Hutton, said he was particularly pleased the committee pointed to the inconsistency between 'adaptive management', as implemented by the Queensland government, and the precautionary principle.

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