New Local Anti-Coal Seam Gas Group:
A new Clarence Valley group opposed to coal seam gas (CSG) mining was formed recently - Clarence Valley Alliance against Coal Seam Gas. The group has already held public information nights in the villages of Whiporie and Copmanhurst.
On 30th March (from 6-9 p.m.) it is holding a further information night at the South Grafton Ex-Servicemen's Club in Wharf Street, South Grafton. Speakers include Drew Hutton (National Convenor of Lock the Gate), Sue Higginson (senior solicitor from the Northern Rivers Environmental Defenders Office), Brian Monk (a CSG refugee from the Darling Downs), Peter Ralph (an author who will be launching his book No Fracking Way that day) and local resident Janet Cavanaugh.
Clarence Valley Council Resolution:
At its February meeting Clarence Valley Council passed a resolution stating that it did not support or endorse coal seam gas activities within the Clarence Valley.
The resolution stated that Council would continue with this policy until a number of measures were undertaken. These included action by the State Government "to responsibly guide and regulate the Coal Seam Gas industry in relation to their activities" and the establishment of scientific proof that the impacts of the industry "will not result in any significant and detrimental environment outcomes
particularly in relation to aquifer water quality".
The resolution, which passed unanimously, was moved by Mayor Richie Williamson.
This was a follow-up to a 2011 resolution sponsored by Councillor Margaret McKenna which called on the State Government to place a moratorium on coal seam gas exploration and extraction until there were appropriate safeguards in place.
Non-Violent Direct Action Training Day in Grafton:
The Clarence Alliance Against CSG has organised a non-violent direct action training day which aims to teach people how to peacefully blockade. It will be held on Sunday 25 March from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the Grafton Community Centre in Duke St, Grafton. Those attending are asked to bring lunch and to donate a gold coin to assist with the hire of the venue.