A bill to ban fracking and give farmers the right to say no to coal seam gas mining and fracking on their land was introduced to the Senate this afternoon for the sixth time by Greens mining and resources spokesperson and Co-Deputy Leader Senator Larissa Waters.
Senator Waters said:
“The Coaltion, led by the Energy Minister, is rolling out the red carpet for the gas industry and with Labor’s push to open up dirty natural gas drilling in the Galilee and Betaloo Basins there’s now even more urgency in giving farmers the right to say no.
“We are in the middle of a drought and climate emergency - we should not be opening new or expanding existing unconventional gas mines which threaten land and water when we have abundant renewable energy that is reliable, jobs rich and genuinely clean. Fracking just the Betaloo Basin would increase Australia’s emissions by 6.6 per cent according to the NT Government’s own report.
“The Greens have been campaigning against the polluting unconventional gas industry since 2010. Instead of expanding gas mining and fracking, the government should be driving a jobs and investment boom in clean renewable energy.
“We have energy alternatives which don’t threaten our climate, health, land, and that will create new jobs for workers and communities - CSG can frack off.
“Since 2011 the Greens have introduced this same bill to give landholders, including traditional owners, the right to say no to coal and gas, and to ban fracking six times now. Labor, Liberal and the National parties have previously voted against it.
“It is particularly shameful of the Nats who just this week have been claiming they stand for farmers’ right to farm yet they never back them against the fossil fuel industry which donates to their political party.
“This bill is a test for the Coalition on where they really stand on food security and the longevity of our rural communities.
“We have precious little good quality agriculture land in Australia and it should be protected from all other inconsistent land uses.
“Farmers should have the legal right to decide that they want to keep farming their land, rather than take the risk of possible long-term groundwater depletion or contamination from coal seam gas mining and fracking.”