Wednesday, 2 November
WA Greens MLC Robin Chapple said new National Party policy giving fracking veto rights to farmers, announced at the state conference in Geraldton last weekend, did nothing to protect the rights of Traditional Owners who are opposed to the practice.
“Whilst I applaud the National Party for finally backing the rights of their constituents on the issue of fracking, this policy change is really quite discriminatory towards Aboriginal people,” Mr Chapple said.
“Traditional Owners, farmers and other landholders currently only have the right to negotiate under the Petroleum and Geothermal Energy Resources Act; they can either come to an agreement and get something, or oppose entirely and get nothing.
“It really irks me that the National Party would come to a unanimous decision over the rights of Farmers, but ignore the rights of such a large portion of their constituency in providing those same right to Native Title holders.
“The implications of this policy announcement are especially huge in the Kimberley, given Andrew Forrest’s Squadron Energy has this week announced a partnership with controversial Goshawk Energy over more than 220,000 sq km of tenements in the Canning Basin.
“The WA Greens oppose on shore gas development, particularly by hydraulic fracturing, on the basis gas is not a clean transition fuel and the industry is unnecessary given the risks to the environment, water reserves and human health.”
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