Friday 19 May 2017 the Natural Resources Committee resolved to publish on its website the Minister’s response to the NRC’s Fracking report.

Friday 19 May 2017 the Natural Resources Committee resolved to publish on its website the Minister’s response to the NRC’s Fracking report.

Mins response to fracking report.


The Bentley Effect The true story of how one remarkable community took on the giant gas mining companies – and WON!

The Bentley Effect screening:
Portland on Mon 17 April at 7pm at Portland Football, Netball & Cricket Club, Henty Street, Portland
Mt Gambier on Tue 18 April at 6.45pm at Oatmill Cinema, 7 Percy Street, Mt Gambier
Robe on Wed 19 April at 6.30pm at Robe Football Club, Robe

Today Tonight – Poisoned farms and toxic food – the bitter battle in country SA that’s now reached the city.

Watch the video here

and read a story in Advertiser

“Our concerns really are about the long-term integrity of wells and drilling, the possible leakage between the aquifers and having a higher density of wells being built and drilled in the region,” Coonawarra Grape and Wine Incorporated president Pete Balnaves said.

The Limestone Coast Protection Alliance response to the “SA Energy Plan”

SA’s Energy Plan

The Limestone Coast Protection Alliance commends Premier Weatherill on his plan to make SA independent of the national chaotic energy mess that has caused SA’s energy problems, and the failure of the Federal government to show any leadership in energy matters.

We are also pleased about the creation of the $150 million Renewable Technology Fund to make renewable energy available 24 hours a day, seven days a week to power the state when it is needed, with the first project to be Australia’s largest grid-connected battery storage.

We believe this fund will inspire innovation amongst entrepreneurs and keep SA at the forefront of renewable energy technology in Australia and perhaps even the world as we have renewable energy companies falling over themselves to invest in SA.

However, the plan to build a new, government-owned gas-fired power station at a cost of $350 million is a complete aberration, totally unnecessary and a waste of taxpayer money. With progress made by these renewable energy initiatives we believe it will be an expensive white elephant by the time it is built. If we have grid connected battery storage in place by next December as promised it will not be necessary.

The incentives being offered to landholders to allow gas wells on their properties in the form of 10% of the royalties charged to mining companies equates to 1% of the value of the gas extracted and will not find support in the South East.

47 communities have been surveyed in our region, with 96% of respondents opposed to unconventional gas mining in the South East, and these surveys are on-going.

The government has no social licence to mine for gas in the South East and these incentives will not change anything. Landholders know the destruction caused by gasfields and for most landholders their land is their superannuation.

Water, air and health will be compromised. Landholders do not want roadworks, trucks, dust and noise on their properties, or their precious water supplies diverted for the use of mining companies. With gasfields on their properties they will be unable to easily farm and will lose approximately 10.9% of production.

There is no insurance available in Australia against personal or property damage caused by gas mining and mining companies do not carry insurance to cover landholders.

The value of properties with gasfields, or with

neighbouring gasfields, will fall as has been witnessed in Queensland and NSW, and may become unsaleable.

The short term gain of a small royalty would never compensate for the long term pain of such huge financial loss.

For further information please call Merilyn Paxton 8768 6100, Marcia Lorenz 8735 8418

Limestone Coast Protection Alliance says go Solar Thermal, not gas

YES to Solar Thermal. NO to gas, says Limestone Coast Protection Alliance in meeting with Tom Koutsantonis


Key leaders from the Limestone Coast SA met with the Minister for Mineral Resources and Energy, Tom Koutsantonis on Monday to convey their position YES to Solar Thermal, NO to gas.

Merilyn Paxton, Farmer, and Chair of the Limestone Coast Protection Alliance; Peter Bissell, Chairman of the Limestone Coast Grape and Wine Council; Dennis Vice, owner and winemaker at Highbank Wines; and Peter Riseley, Mayor of the District Council of Robe met with the Minister.

Merilyn Paxton said “We conveyed our support for a Concentrated Solar Thermal plant at Port Augusta. Solar Thermal can dispatch power when needed, night or day. It can provide baseload. It will provide much-needed competition, create jobs and put SA at the forefront of CleanTech industries”

“We made clear our request that we want a ban on unconventional gasfields in our region. Last year, a review of 685 research papers points to risks to water, air and health. Our region’s water, and our wine and agricultural industries are too important to imperil.

Dennis Vice said: “Our message is that gas drilling is a pipe dream, because we’re now connected to the high gas prices in East Asia. No amount of drilling here can change the price of gas in Asia. Why put the Limestone Coast at risk when we now have the option of reliable, clean Concentrated Solar Thermal plants that can be built in 20 months?”

Peter Riseley said “I am here to represent the 96% of people within our community opposed to gasfields. We are pleased that Mr Koutsantonis has accepted our invitation to visit our members in the Limestone Coast and to hear their concerns about the shale gas industry.”

For further information please contact
Merilyn Paxton on 0429 804 247 or 08 8768 6100
Dennis Vice on 0427 653 311
Peter Riseley 0429 799 528

The ” Gas Crisis ” Con

Have you heard about the great “gas crisis” con? Why are Australian manufacturers and grannies paying through the nose and struggling to buy any gas at all, while we’re in the middle of a boom? Share this video and make sure we don’t let those pollies and gas bullies blame farmers for their absurd mistakes. #GasCrisis #GreatGasCon

South Australia Votes: Solar thermal or Gas

There are alternatives to gas.

Vote here.

Jay Weatherill is currently deciding whether the South Australian Government buys its power from clean, on-demand solar thermal power with storage in Port Augusta or polluting and expensive gas.



On Tuesday 29th November the South Australian government’s Natural Resources Committee released their final report in to Fracking in the South East of South Australia.  The Committee commenced this inquiry in November 2014 and have taken two years to release the 125 page   report.

Presiding Member Hon Steph Key MP announced “After review of all evidence and additional research, the committee has reached the position that social licence does not yet exist for the development of an unconventional gas industry in the South East.  This has been made starkly apparent by widespread opposition from the local community and is is the overarching finding of the inquiry.

“This is not to say unconventional gas exploration and development should never occur in the region but, in the committee’s view, obtaining social licence is a necessary precondition to such development occurring”, Ms Key said.

The Committee made four further recommendations which covered the threat to water, a review of the Petroleum and Geothermal Energy Act 2000, the potential for disruption to landscape and local community, and the necessity for a definitive proposal before any further consideration could be given to  economic benefits.

The Committee concluded that “the window of opportunity for a South East South Australian unconventional gas industry may already be closed.  This may change, depending on future events in the international market.”

To read the complete media release which includes the five recommendations as well as the 125 page NRC Committee’s report go to



Shortly after this announcement, Liberal Opposition Leader Stephen Marshall announced that, should the Liberal party attain government in the March 2018 State election, they would immediately impose a ten year moratorium on unconventional gas exploration and extraction in the South East.

The same afternoon  Minister Tom Koutsantonis, Treasurer and Minister for Finance, Minister for Mineral Resources and Energy and Minister for State Development, unleashed a tirade of abuse towards the Liberal Party.

In answer to a question from the Hon Tom Kenyon, Government Whip “My question is to the Minister for Mineral Resources development.  Will the government entertain a moratorium on unconventional gas exploration?” Tom Koutsantonis replied “ No, we won’t. I have seen in dispatches that members opposite are proposing a moratorium for a decade on unconventional gas exploration in the South-East. That is a devastating blow, if they are elected, to investment in this state’s oil and gas industry.

“Members opposite have put at risk one of the largest employers in this state. They have put at risk Santos. They have put at risk Beach Energy. At a time when they are vulnerable with low oil prices and high debt, they have put South Australian iconic companies at risk, and they shake their heads because they don’t understand. They do not understand the damage they have just done to the oil and gas sector in South Australia.

“First, he has shown his credentials on having a debate on the nuclear industry; now he has shown his credentials on the oil and gas sector. The Liberal Party have been taken hostage by a left green wing ideologue. They no longer represent the interests of business. They no longer represent the interests of shareholders.

“It is interesting to note that Beach Energy and Santos’s largest shareholdings are from mum-and-dad investors here in South Australia. What does the Liberal Party say to them?  I note that there are members opposite sitting in disgust at what their leader has just done. Silence from the member for Hartley, from the member for whatever your seat is called.  I won’t speak to the fallen chests and the long faces at what is another blow to the prestige of a once proud party.  I say once again to the younger members of the Liberal Party: retake your party and retake your heritage; don’t allow it to be overtaken by a man who believes in nothing.
“This damage the Liberal Party are about to perpetrate on these companies should be reconsidered and reconsidered immediately.  The Liberal Party should immediately convene a caucus meeting, overturn this decision and reinstate. There is no recommendation calling for a moratorium on oil and gas. There were members of the Liberal Party on this review and they didn’t recommend a moratorium. I have to say this is a very sad turn of events for the oil and gas sector in South Australia.

“We were a beacon to the industry after what is occurring in New South Wales and Victoria. It wasn’t a partisan issue here in South Australia, but members opposite have just made it one and they have done immense damage to this state’s reputation as an investment jurisdiction.”

Not once has Koutsantonis referred to or deferred to any of the recommendations of the committee or to the people of the Limestone Coast who would be affected by gasfields in their region.  He states that the Liberal party “have put at risk Santos.  Have put at risk Beach Energy”.  He does not even consider that gasfields in the South East will put at risk the health and livelihood of thousands of people and the food bowl of South Australia.

We must keep in mind that under the present Petroleum and Geothermal Energy Act 2000 Minister Koutsantonis has the final say and can ignore or overturn any recommendations put to him.  From his statements to Parliament last week it seems most likely that he will.



Read the NRC committee media release – Media Release NRC fracking report tabled 291116

and the full report



Write letters to Ministers Koutsantonis; the Minister for Agriculture, Food, and Fisheries;  Tourism, Honourable Leon Bignell; the Minister for Sustainability, Environment and Conservation; Water and the River Murray,  Honourable Ian Hunter and the Premier Honourable Jay Weatherill to continue to tell them you do not want gasfields in the South East.


Send copies of your letters to your local media and to your local member.  For contact details for these members, or any members in our State government click here for the SA Politicians2

Regards,   LCPA

Contact Your MPs

Dear Friends,

Premier Weatherill and Mr Koutsantonis, Treasurer and Minister for Minerals and Energy are determined to turn the Limestone Coast into gasfields, claiming that this gas is vital for our “transition” to renewables. This is not true. The Liberal opposition has not spoken out to oppose this.

It is up to us to make our will known.

Attached is a  letter-to-mps-template for you to use, if you wish, to contact MPs.

download template here: letter-to-mps-template

Please note, if you add your address MPs are obliged to reply.

Tailor the template to your own wishes by ticking the appropriate boxes, or write your own letter.



Hon. Jay Weatherill MP, Premier


GPO Box 464,


SA, 5001


Hon. Tom Koutsantonis MP,


GPO Box 2264,

Adelaide, SA 5001


Hon. Dan van Holst Pellekaan
Shadow Minister for Mineral Resources and Energy
Shop 2, 5 Young Street,
Port Augusta SA 5700


If you have any questions please ring Merilyn Paxton 87686100 or Marcia Lorenz 87358418.


Kind regards


On Friday 30th September many of our supporters took part in the Limestone Coast Protection Alliance Stay at Home Rally.  If you were unable to take part on that day  it is not too late to tell our South Australian government that you don’t want gasfields in the South East.  Since Victoria announced a ban on […]

Sound economics as Victoria quits fracking for good

The Victorian Government’s decision to ban fracking is based on sound economic and energy policy.

Queensland’s experiment in unconventional gas has demonstrated that the economic benefits promised by the gas industry largely failed to materialise, and there has been an enormous downside to other industries.Arguments that the gas is needed have rung hollow as Australian domestic gas demand projections have been repeatedly slashed by the Australian Energy Market operator (AEMO), and a global oversupply of LNG has led to a crash in export prices.

Gas industry funded research into the impact on local communities in Queensland’s gas field areas has found that;

  • Local stakeholders in gasfield areas believe resource development has led to a deterioration in local infrastructure, skills, financial, environmental and social capital. (SMI 2014)
  • There were virtually no spillover jobs outside the gas industry itself. (GISERA 2013)
  • For every 10 new gas jobs, 18 agricultural jobs were lost (GISERA 2014)
  • Only 6% of people in these regions believed CSG development would improve their region. (GISERA 2014)

“The manufacturing industry has been one of the biggest losers with LNG exports allowing gas suppliers to drive up prices to Australian users, and suppliers exercising their market power keep Australian prices high even as global prices collapsed,” Principal Adviser at The Australia Institute, Mark Ogge said.

“We now have the ridiculous situation that Australian gas is now cheaper in Korea than it is in Australia. That’s a double-disaster for local manufacturing jobs.

“Experience now tells us that mining more gas in Victoria would not bring local gas prices down.

“Victorian shale gas is very expensive to extract, and wouldn’t be extracted unless gas companies could sell it at the current high prices.

“The days of cheap domestic gas are over – we are sending all the cheap gas overseas.

“Nor have promises of royalties materialised. Royalty projections in Queensland have been repeatedly slashed to a small fraction of original projections.

“Now the companies are even challenging Queensland Governments calculation of the emaciated remaining royalties.

“What benefits there are, have gone almost entirely to the overseas owners of global oil and gas companies licensed to export Australian gas, largely at the expense of Australian businesses and local jobs,” Ogge said.

Type of Publication:
Posted on:
30 August 2016