July 27, 2013

The recent coal seam gas episode of ABC 2’s Shitsville Express was a pleasant surprise – a balanced piece of reporting on coal seam gas.

Daily Telegraph columnist Joe Hildebrand took four young aspiring politicians to northern NSW and southern Queensland.

Interviewees included:
• A pro-CSG farmer who said most farmers on his road were either pro-CSG or uncommitted, and complained of misleading media reporting and harassment by anti-CSG locals.
• Agricultural scientist Professor Stephen Raine who said CSG is about 50% cleaner than black coal and exporting CSG could be major contribution to fighting global warming. He also said more than 99.9% of gas wells do not cause any problems.
• Origin Energy Upstream Regional Manager Rob Hart who discussed the industry’s economic and regional development benefits, the large number of environmental conditions tit faces and its strong safety record.
• Tara Estate anti-CSG activists who claimed their bore-water had become flammable but declined to light it for the camera.

Hildebrandt and the aspiring politicians also visited a CSG water treatment plant and found the treated water tastes superior to standard tap water. The water from this plant is reinjected underground or used for irrigation.

To catch the Shitsville Express, click here.