Underground Coal Gasification (UCG) is an undeveloped, high risk mining technique involving the combustion of coal seams underground.
It has already caused pollution disasters in Australia and overseas. In South West Queenland, Linc Energy polluted 175 square kilometres of prime agricultural land with dangerous chemicals and gasses, causing the death of livestock and damaging farmland for the foreseeable future.
The Queensland government recently responded to this disaster by banning Underground Coal Gasification.
However, this technology is not banned in other states or territories. South Australia is considering allowing commercialisation of UCG. In September 2018, Leigh Creek Energy received final approval from the state's Energy and Mining Minister to commence a three-month trial of UCG at the old Leigh Creek mine site in the state's north.
This proposal is being opposed by the Adnyamathanha people, who have applied for an injunction in South Australia's Supreme Court to stop it from proceeding.
It’s time to build on the momentum of this Queensland ban by instating a national ban on this dangerous practice.
We cannot let agricultural land, ground water and natural environments become the collateral damage of these high risk mining experiments, especially when we have safe, renewable energy options available.
There is no room for this dangerous, high emissions technology in a forward thinking country.
For background information on UCG, please check here.