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Pilliga coal seam gas project an environmental disaster

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The Pilliga Scrub is one of Australia’s bush icons. At over 500,000 hectares – two thirds the size of Belgium - it is the largest temperate woodland in eastern Australia.

It is one of 15 national biodiversity hotspots identified by the Federal Government, and is home to threatened species such as the Regent Honeyeater and the endemic Pilliga Mouse.

Now mining company Eastern Star Gas wants to turn the Pilliga into a massive industrial development zone.

Eastern Star has plans for a huge 1100 well coal seam gas development in the Pilliga. The destruction of the Pilliga is the first big step to seeing our natural forests and rural land covered with gas wells.

This gas field will fragment 85,000 hectares of forest, including a protected area, and this is just the beginning.

The Pilliga project also involves gas pipelines sited along environmentally-sensitive travelling stock routes and across prime agricultural land, against the wishes of local farmers. The associated export terminal at Newcastle will threaten the Kooragang RAMSAR wetland.

Allowing coal seam gas developments in the Pilliga threatens the Great Artesian Basin with the existing dozen-well project already discharging waste water into the Murray-Darling Basin.

Communities across Australia are worried about coal seam gas projects polluting their local water supplies with toxins and salt. If the Pilliga project is built, there's no telling what the impacts on water in north west NSW will be. The Pilliga coal seam gas project is an environmental disaster waiting to happen.

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