Posted on May 25, 2017
The South Australian Dairyfarmers Association today expressed bewilderment at the arrogance of the Weatherill government
“Trust us on looking after children who are wards of the state you said, and yet you failed them, trust us on looking after older south Australians you said, and yet you failed them. Now you are saying trust us on looking after your environment and your premium markets you are now saying but how can we trust you?” said John Hunt, SADA President.
It is for this reason that we call on proponents for gas exploration in the limestone coast region to commit to gaining social license ahead of any future activity. Social license is permission granted by trust and trust is earned. What we have seen from many of these gas producers, particularly in places like Queensland is an expectation that the Government will simply lever open the farm gate for the gas company.
We do not accept this governments attempt to lever open this gate. It is not their gate to open, it is the gate of the local community, a community that is not interested in being ridden roughshod over by out of touch politicians with an inability to see beyond their ivory towers in Adelaide.
The behaviour of the Mining Minister will only lead to a further erosion of trust that will be very difficult to repair. The companies promoting unconventional gas need to now do more than simply issue glib one liners from behind the skirt of the government and enter into a real dialogue with the community. Proponent companies have not yet come even close to that benchmark and unless their approach changes then there will always be pushback.
Parliament of South Australia Natural Resources Committee report of November 2016 stated “Without social license, unconventional gas exploration/development should not proceed in the South East of South Australia. The committee found that social license to explore/develop unconventional gas does not yet exist in the South East of South Australia.” … TRUST ???