Metgasco can’t win a social licence in the Supreme Court

JEREMY BUCKINGHAM MLC & TAMARA SMITH MP

MEDIA RELEASE – 24 April 2015

The Greens have said that coal seam gas company Metgasco does not have a social licence to drill and should pack up and leave, and that the NSW Government should restore a broad public interest test in the state’s mining and gas laws, following a decision by the Supreme Court today to overturn the Government’s suspension drilling at Bentley, near Lismore in the Northern Rivers.

“You can’t win a social licence in the Supreme Court of NSW, and despite this technical legal victory, it is clear coal seam gas has been comprehensively rejected by the community in Northern NSW,” said Greens mining spokesperson Jeremy Buckingham.

“The government may have stuffed up the cancellation process, but the substantive issue that the community has rejected unconventional gas extraction in the Northern Rivers remains.

“The Greens will be introducing legislation to re-instate a broad public interest test so government has the power to protect communities from irresponsible mining and gas drilling.

Greens Member for Ballina Tamara Smith said, “Despite the court victory, Metgasco should heed the clear message from the community that they want a gas field free Northern Rivers.  Metgasco should pack up and leave. “If Metgasco try to drill again, the community will resist and I will be standing with them.

“The judgement in no way endorses Metgasco’s community consultation and the Judge goes to some effort to emphasis “it is no part of my function to assess the desirability of any of the activities of Metgasco, or the desirability of the suspension of any of those activities.”

“It’s clear from the decision today that the laws in NSW are not able to protect the land, water and communities on the Northern Rivers from the risks of coal seam gas development.”

Contact

Jeremy Buckingham: Max Phillips – 9230 2202 or 0419 444 916

Tamara Smith: Graeme Williams – 0402 438 833

2 comments

  • It was the way the state govt went about things that wasn’t legal. They could simply have cancelled the riot squad attendance saying the police were needed elsewhere, as they were. They were just a bit hasty in not thinking things through. They’d just discovered that the PEL had been originally granted to Eddie Obeid’s stockbroker and realised that the people they were setting the riot squad on weren’t the scumbags Thomas George was leading them to believe. They’ll need help to come up with legal alternatives. But some of them will try to keep the gas coming, because they’re stupid.

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  • “It’s clear from the decision today that the laws in NSW are not able to protect the land, water and communities on the Northern Rivers from the risks of coal seam gas development.” SAD DAY 😦
    Well if the government cant protect our land and water we have a duty to do so ourselves, perhaps the government would like to leave us to get on with it this time and not send 900 police to help defend Metgasco against the majority of the community.

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