Cancellation of CSG licences a big win for farmers and community

MEDIA RELEASE – 14 October 2014

Cancellation of CSG licences a big win for farmers and community

The Greens NSW mining spokesperson Jeremy Buckingham congratulated farmers and communities who have been fighting coal seam gas after the NSW Government cancelled 3 Petroleum Exploration Licences (PELs) held by Leichhardt Resources.  He called for the government to cancel other PELs around NSW, including the licences covering the Sydney Metropolitan area and water catchments, saying coal seam gas was unnecessary, unsafe and unwanted.

“What a fantastic win for the farmers and community who have worked so hard to protect their land, water and future,” said Greens MP Jeremy Buckingham.

“The circumstances that have led to the cancellation of the Leichhardt Resources PELs exist with many other exploration licences, and the Greens urge Minister Roberts to cancel other exploration licences around the state and give those communities affected by them some relief and certainty.

“Dart Energy has essentially abandoned PEL 463 which covers much of metropolitan Sydney for example, while community consultation and works programs in the PEL’s covering Sydney’s Water Catchment has been abysmal.

“Farmers Penny and Rob Blatchford have been champions at challenging the validity of these exploration licences, and finally their hard work has paid off.

“I’ve visited the farmers in the Moree, Bylong and the Southern Highlands districts many times.  To put at risk such productive agricultural land by granting and then renewing gas exploration licences to a $2 company, was extremely bad policy and the Minister has done the right thing by ordering the cancellation.

“The Chief Scientist’s recent report warned of “unintended consequences” of coal seam gas and the Environmental Protection Authority acknowledges the industry presents a significant risk.  NSW does not need a new risky fossil fuel industry and should be transitioning to clean renewable energy.”

Contact: Max Phillips – 9230 2202 or 0419 444 916

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