March 13, 2013
NSW Farmers today welcomed Federal Environment Minister Tony Burke’s decision that federal assessment and approval will be required for coal seam gas and large coal mining developments that could have a significant impact on water resources. Fiona Simson, President NSW Farmers, said: “We have consistently stated strong regulatory frameworks are required to place sensible limits on mining and coal seam gas activities.” “Farmers right across NSW have been calling on the NSW Government to deliver a more rigorous assessment process for mining and coal seam gas proposals. “It is not surprising the federal environment minister has seen a need to step in. Improvements are still needed at a state level to give farmers and rural communities confidence that the risks to their land and water from CSG and large coal mining developments will be managed. “NSW Farmers is hopeful the NSW Government will make the necessary improvements to its Strategic Regional Land Use Policy to avoid the need for this federal intervent ion.” NSW Farmers is not opposed to mining and coal seam gas, but is calling for enforceable thresholds on water impacts and for the state’s best agricultural land to be ruled off – limits to mining and gas developments.