Give farmer more power: inquiry

SHOPFRONTS to inform regional people about coal-seam gas and its effects is one recommendation from a state parliamentary inquiry.

The CSG inquiry chaired by Robert Brown tabled its report in Parliament yesterday with 35 recommendations.

Apart from an imbalance between landholders and mining companies when negotiating access, the inquiry found a need for more data on the industry's effects.

"A key theme throughout the report is the level of uncertainty surrounding the potential impacts of the ... industry," said Mr Brown.

"While exploration and drilling are of great concern to many community members, they are unavoidable if we are to assess whether it is safe for the industry to proceed to production."

The inquiry recommended the government continue a ban on hydraulic fracturing (fracking) until a full assessment of chemicals in the process was complete.

It called for shopfronts in affected regions to provide information and advice, as well as a requirement to notify the local council as soon as a petroleum exploration licence was issued.

The final recommendation is that before issuing any further production approvals, the Government should ensure the deficiencies in the regulatory framework are addressed and a comprehensive, effective and transparent regulatory regime is in place.



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