Before the 2015 election, the NSW Nationals promised to make the Northern Rivers CSG free. And now we are delivering for this community, with the last three licences bought back from gas company Metgasco.
How Coal Seam Gas Spread in NSW
For 16 years Labor handed out licences to gas companies with no concern for the communities or environment covered by them. A total of 37 Petroleum Exploration Licences (PELs) were handed out with the majority in rural and regional NSW. Community concerns were brushed aside and vast tracts of land were placed under exploration zones for as little as $1000.
By the time Labor lost office in 2011, PELs covered more than 60 per cent of the state.
It quickly became evident that the community of the Northern Rivers did not want CSG on their land. And because protecting land and water is in our DNA, The Nationals listened to the concerns of the community and fought to regain those licences.
In our first term of Government, the land covered by PELs in NSW was reduced to 15 per cent.
Now, with a CSG free Northern Rivers, the footprint has been reduced to less than eight per cent.
We listened to the concerns of the community and we translated those voices into action. The end result is a huge victory for the region.