500 letters saying 'no' to fracking sent to gas giant
MORE than 500 letters written by Wide Bay farmers, business owners and concerned locals have been handed to Blue Energy executives and State Government officials in a face-to-face meeting in Brisbane.
The delivery of the letters comes after Lock the Gate released mapping showing the oil and gas giant's petroleum licences in the region overlapped with 40,000ha of high quality cropping land in Bundaberg earlier this month.
The campaign, spearheaded by Lock the Gate, aims to eliminate any chance of gas fields being developed in Wide Bay in the future.
Lock the Gate Wide Bay coordinator Vicki Perrin reiterated their call for Blue Energy to relinquish their three licences in the region, set to expire in December and March.
Subsequently, the organisation is also urging the State Government not to renew the fracking permits, so they can't be bought by gas companies.
"The government must support long term industries like tourism and agriculture over boom and bust gas mining," Ms Perrin said.
"Gas companies will never have a social licence to operate in our region - it's time the government realised this."
Cane farmer and business owner Judy Plath said the sheer number of letters demonstrated beyond all doubt Blue Energy didn't have social licences to operate in the area.
"The 135 farmers who wrote a letter represent the bulk of our key farming land, an incredible 46,413ha," she said.
"The remainder of the letters were written by doctors, nurses, business owners, and concerned residents who don't want to see our valuable farming land turned into gas fields.
"These people don't want this invasive, divisive and polluting industry in their backyards, they don't want the risk to soil and water quality in the region, and they don't want our multi-million dollar tourism industry's reputation shattered due to the presence of unconventional gas mining."