March 22, 2011
Mining battle has just begun in South-West: Greens
The WA Greens have welcomed the EPA’s decision to reject the Vasse Coal project, but warn that continued exploration for coal seam gas in the South-West poses an ongoing threat to the region.
“Coal seam gas is just one of the ‘unconventional gas’ resources in WA being spruiked by the WA Government in its Strategic Energy Initiative: Energy 2031 document,” WA Greens Water Spokesperson, Alison Xamon MLC said.
“As yet, there is no clarity from the WA Government about what, if any, chemicals are being used in these processes and what the implications may be for local water tables.
But given the extensive problems we have already seen in the eastern states from fracking, including falling water tables, groundwater contamination and uncontrolled methane leaks, we have every reason to keep an eye on this emerging industry in WA.
“In the South-West, test drilling is underway near the Kaloorup Road near Busselton and possibly other areas.
So Mr Barnett’s claims that he supports the EPA’s decision and cares about the environmental risks don’t seem consistent.
“Sooner or later, we may see proposals to mine coal seam gas or other forms of unconventional gas and the same fight to protect our water sources and private property will start all over again.
“If the media doesn’t report as widely on the next mining proposal, I wonder if Mr Barnett will be so quick to speak up about his environmental concerns,” added Ms Xamon.
For media enquiries, please contact Alison Xamon