More than 1000 people rallied on September 20 to declare Victoria free of coal seam gas. Sixty-seven communities have already declared themselves gasfield free. Many regional councils across Victoria are also opposed to coal seam gas.
The rally vowed to stop unconventional gas drilling, or fracking, from gaining a foothold and demanded the state government ban unconventional gas in Victoria.
Drew Hutton, from Lock The Gate Alliance, said: “This is an historic moment. This state is officially going to become a gasfield-free state.
“If this government is too stupid to realise the people of Victoria have made this decision, they will find they will meet the resistance of these communities just like in other states.
“If police had tried to break the blockade at Bentley, they would have faced the resistance of 10,000 people. In NSW we have fought coal seam gas to a standstill.”
Event organiser Ursula Alquier, from Lock The Gate Alliance said: “These gas companies don't care about what people think. Unconventional gas will pose a huge risk to agriculture.
“We say this risk is completely unacceptable. People are willing to risk arrest because the risks are far too great. We understand the importance of caring for land and waterways.
“Today we declare the whole state of Victoria gasfield free. We won’t stop until we get a total ban of unconventional gas mining.”