Produced by the Australian Petroleum Production and Exploration Association, the We Want CSG campaign will stretch for an initial period of up to five weeks and will highlight how gas can help reduce carbon dioxide emissions; benefits to regional communities; its smaller footprint and co-existence with other industries; as well as its funding for services and benefits in New South Wales and Queensland.
“Our strong community feedback is that people want CSG and they’re increasingly frustrated that until now, the loudest voices in Australia’s energy debate have largely been alarmist and their claims unsubstantiated,” APPEA Eastern Australia chief operating officer Rick Wilkinson said.
“This campaign marks the re-emergence of a fact-based energy security debate in Australia and gives voice to the many Australians who want new jobs, cleaner energy, and the revitalisation of regional communities that comes with the gas industry’s expansion.”
He added the campaign would give the broader community the facts and not the myths about CSG and the industry’s operations.
The campaign – backed by companies such as AGL, Santos, Origin, BG, PetroChina, Shell and ConocoPhillips – comes in response to campaigns by disgruntled landowners, Greens and other lobby groups who are concerned about the impacts of CSG on their land and water aquifers.
A recent Galaxy poll of 1048 people commissioned by the Greens also found that 74% of NSW residents and 67% of Queensland residents were in favour of a moratorium on CSG operations until its full health and environmental impacts on water aquifers were known.
NSW and Queensland swapped places for their support of a ban on CSG drilling in and around urban areas, with 71% and 78% support respectively.