Lock the Gate President Drew Hutton has called on the NSW Government to rule out former federal Nationals leader and Deputy Prime Minister John Anderson from filling the recently announced NSW Land and Water Commissioner role.
Rumours have been circulating over the last few days that the O'Farrell Government has been considering the former Chairman of Eastern Star Gas who controlled exploration licences in the Gunnedah area and Pilliga Forest before selling to Santos in late 2011.
"According to NSW Nationals leader Andrew Stoner the commissioner is supposed to oversee the regulation of invasive exploration activity on Strategic Regional Land," Mr Hutton said.Read more
A major health emergency has developed on Queensland's western Darling Downs with residents in the Tara-Chinchilla area forming a Gasfield Community Support Group to lobby the State Government for more concerted action to address the problems being created for them by having to live surrounded by coal seam gas infrastructure.
Over the last few months residents of the area have complained about health issues like nose and ear bleeding, skin rashes, dizziness and nausea, fatigue and sleeplessness, and they are linking these symptoms with gas smells and coming into contact with bore water that is contaminated with methane and other gases.
Methane has been bubbling up in a 15 kilometre stretch of the Condamine River for many weeks now and local residents and Lock the Gate believe this is linked with the intense coal seam gas developments in the area.Read more
Too little, too late – Coal Seam Gas activities in NSW should cease until comprehensive, inclusive policies are in placePublished: June 23, 2012
Statements today by Andrew Stoner make it obvious that current regulations of the coal seam gas industry are severely lacking, and that given the damage that is being done to communities, to family to our land, our water and our ecosystems, the NSW Government should halt all coal seam gas activities until the new policies are developed in conjunction with concerned residents of NSW.
Lock the Gate Vice President, Jacinta Green said, “It is concerning that these announcements are specifically for exploration on strategic regional land.”
“Our water catchments, our areas of natural beauty, our urban communities and our lifestyle regions all deserve protection and from production as well as exploration.”Read more
A peaceful protestor has today attached himself to a bull-dozer being used by Metgasco to build a new coal seam gas wastewater holding pond near Casino in northern NSW. He is being supported by 50 people from the region who have gathered at the site.
Lismore resident Davey Bob Ramsay, whose family has lived in the Northern Rivers region for 4 generations, locked himself to the machine at dawn this morning to highlight the threats posed by CSG wastewater to land and water in the Richmond Valley.
“We're here because the NSW Government promised to ban evaporation ponds 12 months ago but today Metgasco are building an open wastewater pond on the edge of the Casino floodplain,” said Boudicca Cerese, spokesperson for Lock the Gate Alliance Northern Rivers.Read more
The Lock the Gate Alliance has reacted angrily to news that two coal seam gas wells were approved by the NSW
Government at Fullerton Cove, north of Newcastle, last week following advice from the new Independent Expert Scientific Committee set up by the Federal Government.
The two proposed pilot wells that are planned for drilling by Dart Energy are located next to the Hunter Wetlands
Ramsar site, an internationally significant wetland, and will involve drilling through the Tomago sand beds which provide drinking water for Newcastle.
"The decision by the interim expert water committee on the Fullerton Cove coal seam gas wells exposes deep flaws in the process that need to be fixed" said Drew Hutton, President of the Lock the Gate Alliance.Read more