Greens call for end to 'dangerous and invasive' CSG projects
THE Greens are demanding a national moratorium on new coal seam gas operations following a damning report into the industry by the ABC's Four Corners.
At a press conference on Tuesday, Greens leader Christine Milne; flanked by Greens environment and mining spokeswoman Larissa Waters and Sarah Hanson-Youn, said more scientific investigation was needed before more CSG projects were green-lit.
"What we are seeing is profit overriding environmental protection and social cohesion," Ms Milne said.
An investigation by Four Corners included comments or statements from Queensland farmers, bureaucrats, industry bodies, gas companies and more than 900 pages of government documents obtained through a Right to Information process.
Reporter Matthew Carney found a number of giant gas projects were approved by the former Labor Government in 2010, even without the companies supplying the proper environmental information.
One whistle-blower explained they were told just to "do what they could" as they worked to examine the risks of gas developments on seemingly unrealistic deadlines.
Gas firms and the Australian Petroleum Production and Exploration Association - a CSG lobby group - defended its environmental and safety record on the program, describing Queensland's conditions for development as some of the most stringent in the world.
Back in Melbourne, Ms Waters said "nowhere is safe" from what she described as a threat from these invasive industries.
"This is very serious business here," Ms Waters said.
"It should not be permitted anywhere in Australia."
For those firms already approved to go ahead, Ms Waters said it was time for them to deliver more information on the possible affect the work would have on underground water supplies.
"The Greens do not think we should be approving any more CSG until we have that information," she said.
"This is an incredibly risky and dangerous industry that should not be allowed to continue until we have better information."