Federal Nationals' MP Kevin Hogan disappointed by resumption of gas drilling on NSW north coast

A National Party MP says he was extremely disappointed to learn that gas-drilling operations are set to resume on the New South Wales north coast.

Metgasco today announced plans to drill an exploration well near Casino after suspending operations in the region about six months ago.

It had blamed the uncertain political climate for pulling out of the state, but today the company's chairman says he was heartened by recent supportive comments made by the federal Industry Minister Ian Macfarlane.

The federal member for Page Kevin Hogan has expressed disappointment in the decision.

He says the local community is not ready to accept the industry.

"There are lingering concerns I believe for the vast majority of our community about water-quality issues, about air-quality issues, about the industrialisation that this industry brings to our region," he said.

"I think the vast majority of this community are not comfortable with this industry developing in our region, so therefore I am very disappointed with this announcement." Ian Macfarlane has said development of Australia's natural gas industry will be a priority for the new government.

He described opposition to CSG as unscientific and driven by small but vocal interest groups.

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