Anti mining group Lock the Gate is launching a national campaign calling for immediate law reforms for the mining industry.
The group said that it would release a map showing mining exploration covered 60 per cent of Australia including 11 of the continents 16 iconic landscapes.
The “Call to Country” campaign is calling for an urgent moratorium on coal-seam gas mining and wants to create no-go zones to protect agricultural land, national tourism spots and residential dwellings.
The group also want strict federal laws to ban coal and gas mining from water sources, heritage sites and sensitive environmental areas.
A scroll to be released at the campaign launch says:
"We have accepted coalmining in the past, we have recognised its risks but welcomed its contribution.
"But it's gone too far."
"Our new mapping, released today, reveals that an estimated 437 million hectares of our land is covered by coal and gas licences or applications – that is more than half of Australia and an area 18 times the size of Great Britain," Hutton said.
NSW Minerals Council has slammed the comments by the group.
“Today we have seen yet another attempt by anti-mining activists and the extreme Greens to attack mining using the usual exaggerated claims and misinformation,” NSW Minerals Council CEO Stephen Galilee said.
“If you listen to the overblown rhetoric of anti-mining activists you could be forgiven for thinking that mines are engulfing the entire State of NSW. The truth is completely different.
“Mining exploration, that is finding where NSW mineral resources are actually located, does not translate directly into actual mines. This is borne out by the fact that actual mining operations account for approximately 0.1 per cent of land use in NSW. This compares to agriculture which accounts for 76 per cent of land use in NSW, forestry at 3.7 per cent, and 1.8 per cent for urban and rural residential.
Galilee said that before a new mine is considered, rehabilitation plans must be submitted and agreement by the government, adding that former mines have rehabilitated to create parks, forests and grazing farm land.
“And mining cannot happen in NSW National Parks, which account for 7.6% of State land,” Galilee added.
“The State’s minerals industry has consistently advocated a fact-based approach to planning and land use. Unfortunately the usual overblown rhetoric and misinformation from anti-mining activists continues,” he said.
Image: lockthegategippsland.com & The Australian