The old parties have again refused to take action on coal seam gas, as a Senate Inquiry report was tabled today recommending against the adoption of the Greens' bill to give the Federal Government the power to protect water resources from mining activities.
The bill, proposed by the Australian Greens mining spokesperson Senator Larissa Waters, would recognise water resources that may be impacted by major mining and coal seam gas development as a 'matter of national environmental significance'.
"The bill would increase the Environment Minister's capacity to protect our water and our environment from CSG - what does it say about the Australian Government that they don't want to give themselves the power to act on coal seam gas?" Senator Waters said.
"In the driest inhabited continent on earth, it's ridiculous that water isn't recognised as a national asset and protected at the national level.
"The states have continually failed to protect our farmland, our environment and our water from the rampant CSG industry - you only have to look at the Springbok aquifer contamination in 2009, the release of CSG polluted waste water during the Queensland floods and the recent spill disaster in the Pilliga forest.
"Last week's poll showed 67 per cent of Queenslanders don't support coal seam gas - it's now time for the Federal Government to stop running and instead take responsibility for CSG, before we lose what precious farmland and water resources we have left."
The Senate Inquiry report and the dissenting report from the Australian Greens can be viewed here.