Conservationists from the two Australian states most adversely affected by coal seam gas activity have
joined together today to demand tighter government control of an industry rapidly expanding without a
social licence to operate.
The Australian Petroleum Production and Exploration Association meets this morning to discuss ‘working with communities’ at an environment conference in Coolum.
However, the Nature Conservation Council of NSW and Queensland Conservation Council maintain the
community has already revoked any social licence for coal seam gas activities until it can be conclusively proven safe for our communities, environment and water supplies.
“Across Queensland and NSW, we are dicing with environmental and social disaster because governments at both a state and Federal level won’t stand up to the mining and gas industry,” Nature Conservation Council of NSW Chief Executive Officer Pepe Clarke said today.
“The community has torn up the social licence for coal seam gas exploration and production. Nearly 68% of Australians want a moratorium on coal seam gas and many of our supporters believe coal seam gas mining should be restricted in natural areas and on agricultural land.
“We have farmers, environmentalists and many other community members willing to fight against the
contamination of our water supplies, the loss of our prime agricultural farmland and dangerous impacts
on natural areas and threatened species,” Mr Clarke said.
“There is growing community recognition of a simple fact many of our politicians can’t or won’t
acknowledge – we simply can’t have a healthy economy without a healthy environment and without
protecting our local communities,” Queensland Conservation Council Executive Director Toby Hutcheon
“NSW, Queensland and many other areas in Australia have some critical decisions ahead about balancing the needs of mining companies, the environment, landowners and communities.
“Government policy on coal and coal seam gas activities must be made on truly independent, scientific
evidence based on our unique local conditions, not on second‐guesses and spin from self‐interested
consultants and industry,” Mr Hutcheon said.