What is the Victorian Government doing?
The Victorian Government has proposed legislation to completely ban ‘unconventional’ petroleum exploration and hydraulic stimulation onshore in Victoria and to prohibit ‘conventional’ exploration until at least 2020.
As part of the legislation the Government is retrospectively changing the law so that it is not liable for damages it is causing by its actions.
The Government is planning to take away the property rights of onshore petroleum explorers without paying fair compensation.
Are the Government’s actions justified?
There is no scientific or technical basis to support the Government’s action. On the contrary all reputable research confirms that conventional and unconventional exploration and hydraulic stimulation are all environmentally and operationally safe when properly regulated, as they are in Victoria.
Conventional exploration has been safely carried out in Australia since 1892, and in Victoria since 1924.
It is not in the best interests of Victoria, or Australia as a whole, for the Victorian Government to do what it is doing. Victoria is now out on a limb relative to Australia and the rest of the world.
Why is the Victorian Government taking inappropriate action?
The Government’s actions are politically based, without regard for the best interests of Victoria and Victorians.
Government claims to be protecting the ‘clean, green’ reputation of Victoria’s agriculture sector, citing 1600 essentially identical submissions, mostly opposed to unconventional exploration, as evidence of farmers’ anxiety. The submissions were made to a Parliamentary Inquiry into Onshore Unconventional Gas, the findings of which were inconclusive owing to political wrangling. Conventional exploration was not in question, and was not investigated!
The Victorian Government continues to ignore the truth.