Poll finds 65% oppose coal seam gas in Richmond Valley LGA

ALMOST two-thirds of Richmond Valley residents are against CSG development, an independent Southern Cross University survey has revealed.

The exit poll survey was held - conducted on Federal election day, September 7 this year and - asked: "Do you support coal seam gas exploration and production in the Richmond Valley Council area?"

Of the 605 residents surveyed, 65% were opposed to coal seam gas, while 18% were in support and 17% undecided.

The Richmond Valley result appears to contradict a telephone poll by Richmond Valley Council that which found that 70% of the community were at least somewhat supportive of the industry if it was proven safe and could boost employment in the region.

The referendum-style question asked by SCU researchers was identical to the question used in the Lismore CSG poll at the Lismore council elections last year, where 87% of people said they opposed coal seam gas.

The SCU research team conducted the survey again in Lismore on Federal election day this year and found 85% of people remained opposed to the industry.

The multiple polls add credibility to the findings at a time when the industry is being championed as a boon for rural communities by Federal Industry Minister Ian Macfarlane.

Report co-author Hanabeth Luke said while the community recognised the potential economic benefits of the industry, they were outweighed by perceived potential long-term negative impacts, particularly for natural water systems.

Despite Lismore's strong opposition to CSG, the Richmond Valley results are important because any large-scale CSG development on the Northern Rivers would likely take place mainly around Casino - not Lismore.

While anti-CSG community groups have also conducted their own surveys in the past, this was the first independent academic study of the Richmond Valley 's position.



Woman plucked from crumbling cliff by volunteers

Woman plucked from crumbling cliff by volunteers

"She was scared that if she moved she’d fall down the cliff face"

25 extra firefighters coming to help battle bushfire

25 extra firefighters coming to help battle bushfire

Bushfire near Casino listed as "out of control"

Hackers steal RMS payments from highway contractors

Hackers steal RMS payments from highway contractors

Hackers redirected payments to their own accounts

Local Partners