Farmers return home from Qld gasfield tour

Lock the Gate released this statement on July 29.


A group of 20 residents living near the proposed Santos Narrabri Gas Project in northwest NSW have returned home in a state of shock after a tour of coal seam gas developments in Queensland.

The group took a flight over extensive gasfields south of Chinchilla, spent six hours driving through Santos' “Fairview” gasfields northeast of Roma and have returned determined to prevent a similar invasion in northwest NSW.

Dr Hugh Barrett of Narrabri said: "We met many QLD locals genuinely traumatised by the impacts of the coal seam gas industry.

"The massive scale of the coal seam gas developments in QLD is shocking.

"The gas drillers start in a State Forest, then consume surrounding country and communities with wells, compressor stations, pipelines, roads, huge dams, treatment plants and workers’ camps. The noise, the smells and the 24 hour operations all became very real to us.

"We now realise coal seam gas fields would have enormous and disturbing ramifications for Narrabri. Starting in the Pilliga forest is only the thin edge of the wedge, providing a foothold before invading surrounding farmland with gasfield infrustucture," he said.

Wee Waa farmer Victoria Hamilton said: "We heard many examples of farmers being misled by gas companies. The farmers felt that once they allowed the gas companies in, they had effectively signed away control of their everyday lives.

"Now, having personally witnessed established and expanding coal seam gas fields, we who travelled to the QLD gasfields are all more convinced and determined to prevent a similar invasion in the Narrabri region.”