Lock the Gate Alliance has renewed calls on oil and gas giant Santos to abandon its interest in 1.1 million hectares of expired ‘zombie’ petroleum licences in north west NSW that cover some of the state’s best agricultural land, following claims made by the company in the media.
Lock the Gate Alliance recently released an analysis showing up to 10,000 CSG wells could be drilled if Santos expanded across the expired petroleum licence areas which the NSW Government looks set to renew, in the same way it plans to drill across its Narrabri gasfield.
Since then, Santos has told media “it has no interest in expanding to such an extent”.
Lock the Gate Alliance NSW spokesperson Georgina Woods said if that was the case, the company should sell its interests in all the remaining zombie petroleum licences.
“This is a tired and often repeated lie from CSG companies - they claim they will have minimal impact on a landscape and underground water, and then they expand their gasfields like a spiderweb as far as the eye can see,” she said.
“We have seen it in America and we have seen it in Queensland - you only need to look at the Condamine Forest or the properties near Tara in Southern Queensland on Google Maps to see what happens when this insidious industry gains a foothold.
“Santos has interests in every single one of the remaining 1.1 million hectares worth of zombie licences that the NSW Berejiklian Government has indicated it will renew.
“These licences cover the world-renowned food bowl of the Liverpool Plains, and the rich farmlands surrounding Narrabri in the Namoi Valley.
“If Santos has no plans to develop these licences then it should end the stress and anxiety for farmers, and abandon its interest in these titles immediately.”