The announcement that carcinogenic chemicals have been found in five monitoring bores at Arrow Energy's Tipton West and Daandine gas fields near Dalby is another example of alarm bells going off about the coal seam gas industry.
Significant levels of benzene, toluene and xylene were discovered at levels considerably higher than those considered by regulatory authorities as acceptable.
For example, benzene was found at 15 and 16 parts per billion (ppb) and toluene at 8 ppb. These are well beyond the usual limits of 1 ppb. The State Government shut down Cougar Energy's underground coal gasification plant at Kingaroy when outside monitoring bores registered 2 ppb.Read more
With the campaign to stop heavy-impact mining and gas extraction on good agricultural land and underground water well under way the Lock the Gate Alliance has decided to extend its campaign to include important natural areas not currently protected from mining.
Lock the Gate Alliance president Drew Hutton said there were still many i important areas in New South Wales and Queensland that coal and coal seam gas companies were targeting and didn't hacve locl landowners to defend them.
In New South Wales these areas include the Pilliga forest threatened by coal seam gas, Leard state forest near Boggabri, threatened by open cut coal mines, the Border Ranges world heritage area threatened by a major gas pipeline and the world-heritage listed Wollemi National Park threatened by coal seam gas drilling.Read more
The Lock the Gate Alliance will be organising a rally outside Sydney's Sofitel Hotel this Thursday to coincide with NSW Mineral Exploration & Investment 2011 Conference organised by NSW Premier Barry O'Farrell.
The conference will be showcasing the state's controversial, new coal seam gas industry and delegates to the conference will be paying $900 registration.
Lock the Gate Alliance president, Drew Hutton, said his organisation was concerned no invitation had been issued to him or anyone from his organisation and he had written to the Premier asking him to address the crowd outside the conference.Read more
LNP leader Campbell Newman has made comments today about the need to protect farmers from mining but the Lock the Gate Alliance has called on him to go much further than this.
Lock the Gate Alliance president, Drew Hutton, said the LNP in the past had simply gone along with the Labor government's mantras about coal and coal seam gas mining being able to co-exist with agriculture.
"For the LNP to have credibility, it must now proclaim a clear set of principles governing the impacts of mining and put together policies that detail how it will protect all good quality agricultural land, underground water systems, closely settled areas and sensitive ecosystems," Mr Hutton said.Read more
The Lock the Gate Alliance has welcomed today's announcement by federal Opposition leader, Tony Abbott, that he would support the right of landowners to say 'no' to mining companies wanting to come onto their land.
Speaking on Alan Jones' 2GB program this morning Mr Abbott called for a re-think of the threshold at which the Foreign Investment Review Board must approve agricultural land acquisitions.
President of the Lock the Gate Alliance, Drew Hutton, said Mr Abbott's statements should cause state governments and oppositions, especially those in Queensland and New South Wales, to re-think the level of support they have been giving both coal and coal seam gas mining.Read more