Paul Howes, the national secretary of the Australian Workers Union, will criticise the lack of political support for coal seam gas mining and re-state the union’s push for a federal gas reservation scheme.
Howes will address the Energy Network Association today, criticising Labor, Liberal and Greens for their opposition to CSG mining on farmland.
The Australian Financial Review reports that his speech will include the words, “The interests of all Australians who benefit from exploitation of subsurface resources like gas trumps the interests of a small number who hold a freehold interest on the top layer.”
Last week federal opposition leader Tony Abbott and expressed his concern for CSG mining being granted access to farms.
“It’s very wrong and they shouldn’t be going onto land where the relevant land owners don’t want them,” said Abbott.
Howes will also condemn Labor’s approach to the issue.
“They have been content to let the Greens and the Nationals and everyone else with a vested interest spread fear, not to mention incredibly dangerous policy thought-bubbles, while doing nothing to balance the debate,’’ he will say.