CSG protesters declare war

Anti-CSG protesters have declared war on the mining industry at a Queensland protest on the weekend.

A number of speakers including landholder and founder of Save Our Darling Downs Ruth Armstrong and radio broadcaster Alan Jones addressed about 500 people gathered at the Cecil Plains protest.  

The crowd included local landholders, politicians and supporters gathered to voice concerns over the proposed Arrow Energy Surat Gas Project.  

The CSG industry has declared war on agriculture and I say bring it on," Armstrong said.  

"They will not win anything.   

"This is a war and this is an army so rally the troops. We can't do it alone."  

According to The Chronicle the protest was held on Graham Clapham's property, just one of the many in the region that will be affected if the Surat Gas Project goes ahead.  

If approved, the project will cover an area extending from Wandoan to Dalby and south to Millmerran and Goondiwindi.  

"It's not about personal attacks on our opponents, personal attacks on our government, or hate speech about those two parties," Clapham said.  

"We're passionate about agriculture; we're passionate about protecting the land and resources here against inappropriate mining development."  

Jones called for strength, saying: "We've got to be a lot tougher than we've been".  

"This is a war, make no mistake. It's an invasion which betrays common sense," Jones said.

He added that the current debate was "dominated by lies" and that intellectual debate was needed to win.  

"We are saying this land is not to be contested. It's as plain as the nose on your face, this is prime agricultural land," he said.  

"We don't need any research into Cecil Plains as to what impact CSG mining might have.  

"There is no contemplation of any other function being conducted on this land than agriculture and fibre."  

Arrow Energy did not attend the event.

Rally organiser Ruth Armstrong  has previously stated that if the Arrow project goes ahead, it will have a significant negative impact on agriculture in the area.

"A CSG industry at Cecil Plains will come at a significant cost to soil health, groundwater, agricultural productivity and to our community socially," she said.

"Arrow's proposed project is clearly not in the interests of the farming community around Cecil Plains, nor is it in the interests of all Queenslanders and people generally."

Arrow plans to expand its operations in Queensland's Surat Basin with extensive coal seam gas exploration, development and production projects.

Queensland’s coal seam gas sector has experienced significant growth over the past 15 years and has previously been earmarked by the state government as the “forefront of Queensland’s petroleum industry”.