The Northern Star (Lismore) carried a report today of a press conference held in Metgasco's Casino office by managing director Peter Henderson to explain why the company was immediately suspending caol seam gas operations in the Northern Rivers. Fifteen Casino based employees will lose their jobs as a consequence.
According to Metgasco's Henderson, the uncertain regulatory environment aws the key cause.
Mr Henderson said the primary reason for the immediate suspension was the NSW Government's residential 2km CSG-free buffer zone announced three weeks ago, which remained unclear in its definition of a residential area.
He also blamed the previous 18-month statewide moratorium on the industry and what he said were increasingly lengthy delays in approvals for continued exploration.
"We don't think we'll have sensible stable policy in place until the end of the year after the Federal election, and to go through spending shareholders' funds on that basis would be just wasteful," Mr Henderson said.
Coal seam gas exploration and development has generated considerable community opposition in both the Northern Rivers and on the Liverpool Plains on the other side of the Tablelands. You will get a fair feel of some of the opposing views from the Green blog, North Coast Voices.