NSW Govt dismisses CSG inquiry recommendations

The New South Wales Government has dismissed many of the key recommendations of an inquiry into coal seam gas, saying its own land use policy offers better alternatives.

The inquiry by an Upper House committee reviewed more than 900 submissions and held a series of heated public hearings around the state before handing down the 35 recommendations in May.

They included extending a moratorium on fracking, a controversial technique to extract coal seam gas (CSG), while authorities fully tested the chemicals involved.

The committee also called for a freeze on new CSG production licenses until a comprehensive regulation framework was developed.

But the State Government says the Strategic Regional Land Use policy it has released since the inquiry implements or proposes more effective alternatives to many of the committee's recommendations.

The Government has already announced it is ending the moratorium on fracking and is renewing CSG licenses.

It has now rejected a number of other recommendations from the inquiry, including one to require CSG miners to secure access agreements with landholders.

Greens MP Jeremy Buckingham, who was part of the inquiry committee, says the Government's response is deeply disappointing.

"The Government has not addressed any of the recommendations with its policy," he said.

"There were serious concerns raised about the safety of coal seam gas, its impact on aquifers.

"The Government seems intent on rolling out gas as soon as possible and this response is another failure."

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