Police order protesters to step aside at CSG site
POLICE have ordered protestors step aside and allow earthmoving machinery access to the site of Metgasco's latest operation in Lavadia, near Glenugie in the Clarence Valley earlier this afternoon.
Protestors report trucks and machinery arrived at the Avenue Road site around 1pm, with police providing direction to the remaining protestors not to further obstruct the operation.
"Everyone complied with police to move ... it was very orderly," said a neighbour.
Sergeant Chris Goodman, from Grafton police said he and four other officers attended after being advised of a protest in the location and said on arrival he was met with a peaceful gathering.
"Move on directions were issued... there have been no dramas," Sgt Goodman said.
He confirmed a police presence would stay on for the remainder of the afternoon.
"This is a 100km/hr road and our role is to protect protestors, allow the free flow of traffic and ensure workers can do their job," he said.
CHANTING 'our land, our water, our future, no coal seam gas,' about 50 people gathered this morning to blockade the main access point to Metgasco's latest exploratory mine site, located on the Avenue, Lavadia east of Grafton Airport.
Neighbours say while they were aware of Metgasco's intentions for the site, they claim there has been very little community consultation from the mining company or from the government, and were surprised to discover work had commenced yesterday afternoon.
As word spread, the community came together on site to protest the arrival of Metgasco and were joined by anti-CSG protestors from across the region.
Expecting to see further work on the site today and over coming weeks, protestors say they'll be camping out for as long as it takes with the hope of preventing any further work from being undertaken.
Protestors say they fear what is likely to be devastating affects on their community and the environment.
The Daily Examiner has spoken with a representative of Metgasco and we will bring you their comments later in the day.
CLARENCE Valley Against Coal Seam Gas has called a "code red" and is urging people to come to the Pillar Valley/Glenugie area where Metgasco has started work.
A Facebook post was sent out last night saying:
"CODE RED: Pillar Valley/Glenugie.
"Bring food and water, your friends and neighbours, your pet raptors. Metgasco have started at the Avenue (Golden Mile Lane). Drill pad prepared and infrastructure being set up.
"This the headwaters of the Coldstream River, home to families who respect and value a healthy the environment and love life and their families.
"We need your support now.
"IT STOPS HERE. NO CSG FOR THE CLARENCE VALLEY. FRACK OFF METGASCO, ERM AND LNG CHINA."
Daily Examiner staff are on their way to the site now and we will have updates shortly.
Meanwhile send any information, photos or video to us at firstname.lastname@example.org.