CSG water catchment ban heats up in Illawarra

Over 7000 people have signed Stop CSG Illawarra's petition demanding a CSG catchment ban.
Sunday, April 28, 2013

Stop CSG Illawarra (SCSGI) held its monthly organising meeting on April 21, attended by just over 80 people. The community feels it is in limbo, waiting on a decision from the Planning Assessment Commission (PAC) on the local coal seam gas project.

A PAC decision was expected several weeks ago on whether to approve Apex’s application to extend drilling deadlines, enabling them to start work on the project.

The meeting heard and discussed a political update on the campaign, including recent developments such as the NSW Government's coal seam gas (CSG) exclusion zones and the federal water trigger.

Participants cheered at news of the recent announcements by Metgasco and Dart to suspend NSW operations until 'the political climate' settles down. Significant community events in other areas, such as the Campbelltown rally to stop CSG and the big CSG meetings held in the Blue Mountains and Gerringong recently, were also reported.

SCSGI has vowed on several occasions to organise a mass, peaceful blockade to stop work if the PAC approves the application.

Participants agreed the key aim over the next period would be to continue the campaign for a CSG ban in NSW drinking water catchments. Over 7000 people have signed SCSGI's petition demanding a CSG catchment ban. The aim is to reach 10,000 to trigger another debate in NSW parliament.

The catchment campaign will also be woven into the group's ongoing outreach activity, such as community stalls, CSG-free suburban door-knocking and the local business supporters program.