The Lock the Gate Alliance is today launching a new series of short videos that tell the stories of people whose lives and businesses have been damaged by the coal seam gas industry in Queensland.
President of Lock the Gate Drew Hutton said the videos showcased the harrowing stories of individuals who had suffered a range of impacts from health effects including stress and depression to loss of production and water bores that were drying up.
“The gas companies and the government are keen to tell us that all is well in Queensland and that farmers and CSG companies are coexisting but it doesn’t take long to uncover a story that is far from this myth,” Mr Hutton said.
“Lock the Gate spent a week travelling through the Western Downs last month interviewing farmers and listening to stories of their interactions with the gas companies.
“What we heard was a consistent story of bullying and intimidation, of broken promises and underhand tactics by the gas companies in their dealings with landholders.
“But instead of acting to provide better protections for landowners, the Queensland Government acted last week to weaken them even further with the passing of 11th hour amendments that effectively remove the right of landholders to object to mining projects.
“We have put together a number of videos of the interviews to let people in other parts of Australia hear the real story about the impact of the unconventional gas industry on people who have been forced to live in Australia’s Gaslands.”
The videos are being released progressively over the next few weeks.
The first three, released today, showcase stories from the Western Downs from a cotton farmer, a grain grower and a stud bull breeder. All tell a similar story of gas companies who have little respect for existing land uses like farming.
Mr Hutton said additional videos would be released over the coming weeks that would tell more stories of hardship, economic loss, health impacts and the destruction of cultural heritage by the coal seam gas industry.
“This is an important series that we hope will be showing in town halls around the nation and will be shared widely on social media,” Mr Hutton said.
The first videos released can be found here: www.lockthegate.org.au/voices
For further information contact:
Drew Hutton 0428 487 110
Kate Dennehy 0419 432 624