NT Labor fracking disaster shows need for Greens voice

Australian Greens

NT Greens press release Tuesday 9th May 2023:

Last week saw one of the darkest days in Northern Territory history when on Wednesday May 3 the Labor Government announced it was greenlighting the development of an onshore fracking industry.

Chief Minister Natasha Fyles and Mining Minister Nicole Manison’s announcement to allow full scale fracking of the Beetaloo Basin to proceed contained blatant lies, including statements that falsely claimed Aboriginal people had veto rights over fracking projects and that the NT Government has implemented all 135 recommendations stemming from the Pepper Inquiry.

Shortly after, the person tasked with overseeing the implementation of the Pepper Inquiry recommendations, David Richie, came out disputing the Labor Government’s claims. Mr Richie correctly identified that the government had not implemented recommendation 9.8, to guarantee no net increase to Australia’s carbon emissions as a result of fracking in the NT.

Recommendation 11.6 that was intended to provide an effective and accessible fracking information program to Aboriginal people affected by fracking has also been marked as completed despite miserable progress. At the 3 May press conference, the Chief Minister also said “Aboriginal people have the power to veto a project”. This is a misleading claim, not reflected by the current legislation.

In greenlighting the fracking of the Beetaloo, NT Labor has lied to Territorians who have consistently raised deep concerns over environmental, water and cultural impacts of fracking of the NT – including their own members.

The NT Greens are fighting for a Territory that protects country, people and the environment rather than prioritising the profits of fossil fuel companies. Community organisations and campaigners have been fighting this battle for over a decade, it is clear their voices are not being heard by the NT Labor government.

To meaningfully address climate change the NT needs leadership and a plan for a clean energy future, not further reliance on life threatening fossil fuels. NT Labor can’t be trusted to govern and they can’t be trusted on the future of the Territory. The NT is The Greens’ next battleground and we’re here to provide a real alternative.

/Public Release. View in full here.