I have written this week to Industry, resources and Energy Minister Anthony Roberts to request that the government explicitly state in geographical terms which areas of NSW it plans to release as ‘strategic areas’ for unconventional gas exploration, after the Minister indicated the government would grant new exploration licences in mid-2016.
The people of NSW have had enough uncertainty and games from the government. The government should come clear and just state exactly where they think coal seam and other unconventional gas extraction should and should not occur.
The letter to Mr Roberts states:
While a commitment to good process is important, I believe it is even more important on this issue for the government to be clear and explicit about precisely which geographical areas it considers appropriate for unconventional gas exploration and eventual extraction.
I therefore request that the government publicly state exactly which geographic areas, in terms of coordinates or local government areas, that it considers appropriate for the ‘strategic release’ of new Petroleum Exploration Licences.
While we have our differences about the need for unconventional gas extraction in NSW, I am sure we both agree that providing clarity and certainty to the community and industry should be a priority.
Jeremy Buckingham, NSW Greens energy spokesman