Greens welcome cancellation of Central Coast CSG licence and push for stronger community protection

Media Release – 26 September 2018

The Greens have welcomed the announcement that the NSW Government has cancelled the PEL 461 coal seam gas exploration licence on the Central Coast following strong community opposition.

Greens Resources spokesperson Jeremy Buckingham called on stronger action from both the NSW and Federal governments to protect communities against the impacts of coal seam gas activities.

He said the NSW Government should cancel the remaining coal seam gas licence covering Santos’s mega-gas field proposal in the Pilliga and the Federal government must halt gas exploration off the coast of Newcastle and the Central Coast

“The buyback and cancellation of the PEL 461 exploration licence is a great win for the local community and all who have joined the fight to protect our land and future from coal seam gas,” he said.

“But there is important and unfinished business when it comes to protecting communities from the dangers of coal seam gas exploration and production.

“The Central Coast community does not support an offshore gasfield off its coastline that would put at risk whales, marine life and threaten valuable fisheries. Prime Minister Scott Morrison should prohibit offshore gas and oil development off the NSW coast.

“All NSW communities deserve equal protection from the risks of coal seam gas, farmers and landholders need safety as much as urban communities in marginal electorates.

“Right now, there is an active proposal from Santos for a controversial 850-well coal seam field over 95,000 hectares in the Pilliga.

“The Narrabri coal seam gas field would become the largest coal seam gas in the state and risk vast areas of woodland, threatened species and groundwater from the Great Artesian Basin. Exploration activities for this project have already seen toxic wastewater leak from holding ponds and contaminate local aquifers.

“Coal seam gas is too risky for the Pilliga. The NSW Government should buy back the Santos licence and give the local community greater security over its precious water resources, the Pilliga forest and its future,” Mr Buckingham said.

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