Clinical Psychologist Dr Wayne Somerville has warned coal seam gas poses a greater risk to the mental health of rural communities than bush fires, drought or economic recession.
Clinical Psychologist Dr Wayne Somerville has warned coal seam gas poses a greater risk to the mental health of rural communities than bush fires, drought or economic recession. Scott Harlum

CSG review 'not enough for here'

CASINO rural landowner Wayne Somerville says the Prime Minister's announcement of an Independent Expert Scientific Committee to study the effects of coal seam gas mining falls short of what is needed in the Northern Rivers.

The committee was announced on Tuesday by the Prime Minister as a concession to independent MP Tony Windsor as part of deal to get the mining tax through the Lower House.

However, it falls short of what is needed, Mr Somerville said.

"It's a step in the right direction, but it's a promise for research in the future," Mr Somerville said.

"Meanwhile the coal gas seam mining industry is getting its teeth stuck into the Northern Rivers."

Mr Somerville called for an immediate moratorium to be placed on CSG mining ahead of the establishment of the scientific committee.

"There needs to be a systematic assessment of the state of water done before any drilling," he said.

"Julia Gillard has only done this to get Tony Windsor's vote and it's a promise for the future.

"In the meantime mining companies have unfettered access to the Northern Rivers.

"While they take the time to establish this committee, the results from the next 12 months of mining could be tragic."

  

Are the Prime Minister's safeguards enough? Leave a comment below.



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