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Queensland Country Life calls for more testing before CSG approval

Queensland Country Life – that bastion of radical thought – has just published an article in which federal and state water experts are calling for more testing before the $35 billion coal seam gas industry gets the go-ahead in Queensland and to a lesser extent in NSW.

The experts are worried- really worried about the potential for ‘fracking’ -the process whereby the coal seam is ruptured so that the gas can be extracted- to release toxic chemicals into ground water used by surrounding communities and farms.

To quote the article: “NSW Natural Resources Commissioner, John Williams, has warned there could be potentially catastrophic impacts on State water resources if CSG projects go ahead unchecked.”

In Queensland, we have a Minister for Energy, Stephen Roberston, who believes in the tooth fairy and while he has a small crease of worry on his forehead, nothing is being done to call a moratorium to mining until this issue is sorted.

Meanwhile environmental activists have identified these chemicals in the fracking fluid used in the USA: benzene, ethylbenzene, toluene, boric acid, monoethanolamine, xylene, diesel-range organics, methanol, formaldehyde, hydrochloric acid, ammonium bisulfite, 2-butoxyethanol, and 5-chloro-2-methyl-4-isothiazotin-3-one. (Recently, in congressional testimony, drilling companies have confirmed the presence of many of these chemicals.)

According to Theo Colborn, a noted expert on water issues and endocrine disruptors, at least half of the chemicals known to be present in fracking fluid are toxic; many of them are carcinogens, neurotoxins, endocrine disruptors, and mutagens. But Colborn estimates that a third of the chemicals in fracking fluid remain unknown to the public. Source Vanity Fair

If you live on a property within cooeee of a coal seam (and that’s most of Qld) do yourself a favour and go and see Gas Lands- it’s a movie which doesn’t please the coal companies but what the hey…

Jenny Stirling
Qld Greens spokesperson

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