• North Coast Environment Council

    Formed in 1976, we are the peak umbrella environment group in northern NSW. We cover the area from the Hunter to the Tweed and west to the New England Highway. We also actively support other campaigns further afield. We receive no government funding and have no paid staff or central office. Our members and office-bearers work around the region, often travelling large distances to assist others as we organise in our defence of the environment and the communities it sustains. We rely on donations and the efforts of our members and volunteers, to remain effective. If you would like to make a tax deductible donation to assist us with our work, we guarantee plenty of bang for your buck. Post us a message to this site and we will get back to you.
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North coast environment groups have described the extent of coal seam gas exploration licences in NSW as a disaster waiting to happen, and in a submission to the Coal and Gas Strategy have called for an immediate moratorium on any further coal seam gas approvals in NSW.

Submissions closed last Friday on the NSW Coal and Gas Strategy, which was released by the former Labor Government for public exhibition, but which the new Coalition Government has indicated it will probably go on to adopt.

“Just last week, as we finalised our submission to the NSW Coal and Gas Strategy Scoping Paper, we uncovered the full extent of coal seam gas licences across NSW” said Ms Carmel Flint, spokesperson for the North East Forest Alliance.

“Using Department of Mineral Resources data, we found that 23.5 million hectares of NSW is already covered by petroleum exploration or production licences, and a further 13.8 million hectares has current applications pending approval. This equates to almost half of NSW.

“Almost the entire north coast, from Gosford in the south to Byron Bay in the north, is covered by existing exploration licences or applications.

“These licences have been issued across vast swathes of NSW without any community consultation whatsoever and without any meaningful environmental assessment.

“Evidence from Queensland and overseas indicates that coal seam gas production has lasting and irreversible impacts on water resources, rural communities and native wildlife.

“The former Labor Government had been busy handing out approvals like lollies, without any fair system of checks and balances or any opportunities for the community to have its say” said Ms Susie Russell, vice-president of the North Coast Environment Council.

“Now, the spread of the industry across NSW is looming as a cause of massive land-use disputes, which we predict will lead to unprecedented conflict in rural NSW over the next decade.

“Action is needed now – we are asking the Premier, Barry O’Farrell, to implement an urgent moratorium on coal seam gas exploration and production in NSW.

“There also needs to be far-reaching planning reforms that prevent exploration in high conservation value areas, protect water resources and give the community a real say and active participation in making decisions.

“The Premier needs to tell NSW where he stands – is he on the side of our beautiful natural areas, priceless water resources and thriving communities or that of the big coal seam gas companies?”

Map of licences and applications


One Response

  1. After watching the documentary “gasland” I am now aware of the consequences of this type of industry and do not want it to happen here. Please keep me informed…..thank you .

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