No for Richmond
RESIDENTS of Bungawalbin-Whiporie Road celebrated the declaration of their road as 'gasfield free' on Saturday at an event at Forest Glen Organic Farm.
This is the first area in Richmond Valley Shire to declare itself gasfield free.
Newly elected mayor of Richmond Valley Council Ernie Bennett accepted the declaration.
"I am a farmer. I don't want my water destroyed. It does concern me," he said. But the mayor stated the council was limited in what it could do.
"The State Government pretty well do what they like," he said.
Mayor Bennett also alluded to the fact that despite his sympathies, his voice was just one of seven on the council.
Bungawalbin locals Candy Lawrence and Christine Coates coordinated the survey which took in 59 properties over 45 kilometres in the localities of Whiporie, Gibberagee and Bungawalbin.
To the question 'Do you want your road and land gasfield free?' 77 people from 48 properties answered 'yes'. Eleven properties did not respond.
Candy Lawrence acknowledged the significance of the declaration being the first in Richmond Valley.
"The people of this community have spoken, the first community in the Richmond Valley council area to do so and we will not be the last," she told the gathering.
"It is becoming clearer every day that for all the spin and hype, CSG and tight sands extraction is not good for our community and we will not sit by while the politicians ignore our will."