Upper Hunter MP Michael Johnsen blasted over false CSG complaint claims

Published: June 16, 2020

NSW farmers are outraged after National Party Member for the Upper Hunter, Michael Johnsen falsely claimed he had not been contacted by farmers worried about the deeply unpopular Santos Narrabri coal seam gas project.

Mr Johnsen made the claims during ABC Country Hour (begins at roughly 7.00) on Monday, saying, in response to whether he’d had any blow back or complaints from farmers, “no I haven’t”.

The comments come after National Party MPs recently sided with their Liberal Party colleagues in the NSW Lower House to vote down a Bill to impose a moratorium on the CSG industry, at least until all of the Chief Scientist’s recommendations were put in place.

Upper Hunter constituent Dr Jacinta Green, representing SOS Liverpool Plains, has since come forward confirming she contacted Mr Johnsen with concerns over the gasfield.

“I was horrified to hear on Country Hour that Michael Johnsen said that he had not heard from one farmer opposed to coal seam gas,” said Dr Green.

“I wrote to Mr Johnsen’s office in early June about the CSG Moratorium Bill, voicing our opposition to CSG and asking him to side with us, farmers of the Liverpool Plains in Mr Johnsen’s own electorate, to abstain from voting against the Bill.

“I am appalled that Mr Johnsen fails to even acknowledge our concerns.”

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