The Abbott Government can't hand over federal powers to refuse coal seam gas proposals that risk our water to the states, as Minister Macfarlane claimed today.
"The Greens and the rural independents worked together in the last Parliament to Abbott proof federal legislation to protect water from coal seam gas," Senator Larissa Waters, Australian Greens mining spokesperson, said.
"Minister Macfarlane and the big mining companies want to see this federal protection in the hands of the very state premiers who have let this dangerous industry run rampant.
"But without amending this legislation, with the support of both houses of Parliament, the Abbott Government cannot devolve this responsibility to the states in its environmentally reckless ‘one-stop shop'.
"Unfortunately, the rest of our federal environmental protections are set to be sold out in this ‘one-stop shop' because Labor refused to support the Greens' efforts to Abbott proof them.
"This means responsibility for approving projects that impact our World Heritage Areas, like the Great Barrier Reef, and threatened species, like koalas, will be left up to Tony Abbott's state cronies.
"The Greens will continue to stand with the community against this destructive devolution of national environment law and we are proud to have worked with the rural independents to ensure federal water protection against CSG.
"Giving state governments the final say on whether coal seam gas projects go ahead, regardless of the impact on our groundwater, would threaten our future food security.
"At the end of the fossil fuel era, with renewable alternatives on hand, it's short sighted to continue to risk our land, water and climate with CSG," Senator Waters said.