Tuesday, 10 December 2013


Where have we been lately?

The Grafton Nannas have been indulging in too many nanna naps to post anything on the blog for ages.  But they haven't been ignoring matters gaseous.  The Nannas have continued with knit-ins at their usual venue outside the office of local member, Chris Gulaptis, MP.  And they have enjoyed nanna natters over several relaxed morning teas and an end of year nanna lunch.

But it's time we returned to serious matters!

Nannas Concerned about Salty Water Produced During Gas Mining

The Grafton Loop of the Knitting Nannas Against Gas have written to their local State Member of Parliament, Chris Gulaptis, about the environmental threat posed by the water produced during the gas mining process.

Nanna Lynette delivers the letter to Chris Gulaptis' office.

The Nannas understand that this water is usually very saline and that it is produced in large quantities.  Obviously the miners need to take great care in dealing with this liquid so that there is not a repeat of the 10,000 litre spillage that occurred some years ago in the Pilliga (in central NSW).

The Nannas asked Mr Gulaptis what precautions the State Government was taking to ensure that the produced water was safely stored and disposed of safely.

They believe that there is a need for regulation and also an effective monitoring/compliance framework so that mining companies do not shirk their responsibilities to the NSW community.

They also cautioned the Government about any proposal to let the industry self-regulate on this matter saying such a move "would be extremely risky and would not be in the interests of the community".

The Government's regulation of the gas mining industry leaves a great deal to be desired.  Government action has only happened following considerable public pressure and even then measures have usually been tokenistic (as in the case of the 2 km exclusion zone).  The Nannas expect rhat there will be a similar reluctance to act effectively on this matter.

Where were our Local Federal MPs when the Franklins came to Canberra?

Glenugie farmers Donna and Mick Franklin rode horses from Grafton to Canberra to protest against Metgasco's coal seam gas mining in their area.  They arrived in Canberra on  December 3 after an epic 74 day journey along the Bicentennial Trial.  The Franklins and others in their party were joined by other Clarence Valley people (including Knitting Nanna Sarah) outside Parliament House.

They must have been disappointed that the federal local members, Luke Hartsuyker (Cowper) and the newly elected Kevin Hogan (Page) did not bother to meet them on their arrival. The Glenugie area is in Hartsuyker's electorate but people from Page were also involved in the ride - and in the Glenugie protest and blockade which encouraged the Franklins to embark on their protest ride.

It was not really surprising that Hartsuyker was not present as he has never shown any concern about CSG or the Metgasco activities at Glenugie.  However, Hogan campaigned strongly against CSG in the recent federal election. So the Nannas are left wondering if Mr Hogan, influenced by his National and Liberal Party colleagues, is now re-thinking his anti-CSG stance.

The Daily Examiner's report of the Franklins' arrival in Canberra.