NSW Government buys back licence
THE NSW Government has bought back Petroleum Exploration Licence 445, which covered much of the Northern Rivers and the south-western corner of the Tweed Shire.
The licence allowed for Dart Energy to conduct exploration for potential CSG sites.
“The Northern Rivers community overwhelmingly wanted PEL 445 gone and I am thrilled we have made this a reality,’’ said Lismore MP Thomas George, as he announced the buyback on Monday.
“Through buybacks this government has now reduced the number of PELs in the Northern Rivers from seven – all of them granted by the former Labor Government – to three and we are working to reduce this footprint further.
“Previously 39% of the Lismore electorate was covered in PELs and due to the success of our buyback program it is now only 5%.”
Mr George said further buybacks could be negotiated if required on a case-by-case basis.
“I joined Deputy Premier Troy Grant in March this year and pledged to my community we would buy this PEL back, and now we are delivering again for the region. The NSW Nationals does what is in the best interests of regional communities - we listen locally and use our voice in Government to deliver.”
Mr George said PEL 445’s buyback followed the buyback of another Northern Rivers PEL, PEL 457, covering 75,000 hectares west of Yamba in the state’s Northern Rivers region.
“I am proud to once again stand here and show the NSW Government is serious about achieving results for the Northern Rivers and its residents,” Mr George said.