NSW POLICY UPDATE
THE coal seam gas capital of the Northern Rivers – Casino – will host a forum on the controversial industry on Thursday.
The forum will go ahead at the Casino RSM Club, 2-4pm, with Planning Minister, Brad Hazzard, as the key speaker.
NSW Minister for Resources and Energy, Chris Hartcher, will not attend.
The forum was announced by the Member for Lismore, Thomas George (pictured).
Mr George, a former stock and station agent, has been under pressure from farmers concerned about CSG mining on the Far North Coast.
It is expected the Casino RSM Club's spacious auditorium will be packed with farmers and environmentalists who have formed an unofficial unlikely alliance in the ongoing dispute over water and land rights in the wake of CSG explorers moving in.
The Casino district in the Richmond Valley Council area has been in the forefront of CSG exploration.
Most councils on the Far North Coast oppose the CSG industry.
Richmond Valley Council almost stands alone in not declaring opposition to the CSG industry in the district. Councillors in the near future expect to call a meeting to explain local government's role and responsibility in CSG planning under the direction of the State Government.
North Coast Nationals MPs Don Page, Thomas George, Geoff Provest and Chris Gulaptis said they are pleased that Brad Hazzard has accepted their invitation to the North Coast to meet with locals to discuss the government's Regional Strategic Land Use Policy, which is currently open to public comment.