Angry producers boo Bligh
ANGRY protestors picketed Premier Anna Bligh's Community Cabinet session in Roma yesterday.
Waving placards and chanting, the loudest of the protestors' boos were reserved for Natural Resources Minister Stephen Robertson.
Ms Bligh introduced the Community Cabinet meeting as an opportunity to “talk directly to government” and it was protestor Dayne “the frack man” Pratzky who took the Premier up on her offer when he shouted: “You're an embarrassment to Queensland and you should be ashamed.”
The most pressing issues yesterday were landholder rights and the impact the coal seam gas industry might have on the Great Artesian Basin and the environment in general.
Mr Roberston was also under increased pressure from the public after State Government was forced to close down the Cougar Energy underground coal gasification plant near Kingaroy when it learnt traces of benzene and toluene were found in groundwater at the site and a neighbouring property.
Ms Bligh said while CSG was extremely important to Queensland's future economic growth she was determined to see it didn't come at the expense of primary production.
“We're acutely aware of the importance of underground aquifers and the Great Artesian Basin,” Ms Bligh said.
Ms Bligh said she also stood behind the Co-ordinator-General's evaluation of the CSG companies' Environmental Impact Statements.
“I'm satisfied these conditions are among the most rigorous in the world,” Ms Bligh said.
Ms Bligh said a number of amendments to the land access code recently introduced into parliament would give landholders more of an equal footing when dealing with CSG companies.