The Lock The Gate Alliance has labelled the new $5M advertising campaign by the Australian Petroleum Production and Exploration Association (APPEA) as a re-hashed scare campaign that is both misleading and insulting to Australians trying to protect their land and water from CSG mining.
"The CSG companies are trying to scare the Australian people into submission - vilifying farmers who stand up against them and demanding that they have unfettered access to our best farmland and water resources" said Drew Hutton, President of Lock The Gate Alliance.
"This is a classic case of over-reach - APPEA are even opposed to new Federal laws which simply require CSG companies to assess their impacts on water resources before they start drilling.
"This APPEA campaign is basically trying to undermine our democratic processes by throwing buckets of money into advertising in the lead-up to the Federal election.
"What APPEA won't tell us in their $5M advertising spend is that the vast majority of profits they produce go to overseas shareholders.
"What they won't tell us is that their plans to export vast quantities of CSG for export will actually limit gas supply in Australia and dramatically increase the prices we pay for gas here.
"In fact, it is the CSG companies themselves who will be driving up energy prices and the cost of living in Australia - but they are accusing farmers of this.
"The CSG companies won't even accept reserving a small percentage of gas at a reasonable price for Australian manufacturers to use.
"The $5M in advertisements also won't tell us about the negative impacts that CSG has on other industries - how they are costing our agriculture and tourism sectors millions of dollars each year.
"However, what is most extraordinary about this scare campaign from APPEA, is that it labels good Australian citizens, farmers who have spent their lives feeding the country, as 'ideological activists'.
"We expect Australian's to see right through this campaign, as they have with previous campaigns run by the CSG industry. There is a healthy scepticism in Australia towards big multinational companies trying to feather their own nests.
"APPEA claims that Australia can't afford to stall future gas projects - to the contrary, Australia can't afford to let a short term profit-focused industry ruin our farmland, pollute our water, threaten our health and divide our communities' he said.