The Victorian resources minister Wade Noonan has maintained that the State Government’s move to permanently ban fracking is continuing to gain support among Victorian farmers.
Mr Noonan, who went on a guided tour through a local farm in Bambra, inland of Aireys Inlet, said farmers are standing behind the government decision to ban the practice for good.
He stressed that the area has a strong focus on sustainable agriculture, with some local farmers actively engaged with the Lock the Gate campaign.
“Victorians have made up their mind on fracking, and it’s great to hear first-hand accounts from members of the community who support putting an end to it,” the Minister added.
Late last year, Mr Noonan introduced the Resources Legislation Amendment (Fracking Ban) Bill 2016 to Parliament. The legislation will outlaw gas fracking and coal seam gas extraction, while also extending the moratorium on onshore conventional gas exploration and development to 30 June, 2020.
“The Bill currently before Parliament will ensure Victoria remains fracking-free to support food and fibre production across the state, and local jobs,” the Minister concluded.
The Labor Government’s decision to ban fracking was made in response to the 2015 Parliamentary Inquiry into Onshore Unconventional Gas in Victoria, which received more than 1600 submissions, largely opposed to onshore unconventional gas.
Victoria’s food and fibre exports are estimated to inject about $12 billion in the state economy’s each year.