Northern Territory Traditional Owners tell Origin not to frack

October 21, 2017
NT Traditional Owners protest against fracking in the NT at Origin Energy’s AGM in Sydney on October 18. Photo: Peter Boyle

Traditional Owners from the Gulf Country in the Northern Territory showed their opposition to fracking  for shale gas outside Origin Energy’s AGM on October 18. The protest was organised by SEED — the Indigenous Youth Climate Network.

Traditional Owner Nancy Hoosan said: “I’m not just talking for myself and my people, I’m talking for everyone. No matter what colour you are or what language you speak, we drink the same water.

“Australian government, listen to us. We don’t want fracking in our country.”

The Traditional Owners are campaigning for shale and coal seam gas mining to be banned to ensure the water and land are not poisoned. 

Nancy, her son Gadrian and Larissa Baldwin were among a group of Indigenous activists who attended the meeting. 

According to Market Forces, Origin Energy’s Gordon Cairns was “completely dismissive of their concerns about the risks fracking poses to water. In the NT, water is life, and the unconventional gas industry has managed to convince enough governments that fracking is safe, while communities deal with the consequences.”

Market Forces reported it received 14% support for its motion demanding the company disclose its plans to reduce climate risk. Other motions which requested Origin produce a transition plan and measure fugitive methane emissions received 3% and 5% support respectively. 

The second of three reports on fracking, conducted by the NT government, is due to be handed down this month. 

The interim report in July argued that, subject to strict regulations, it was feasible for an ecologically sustainable onshore unconventional shale gas industry to be developed. The Traditional Owners, among others, disagree.

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