Thousands protest coal seam gas

Coal seam gas (CSG) mining ‘inevitable’ according to NSW government

Thousands of New South Wales residents marched against coal seam gas mining over the weekend.

3,000 people have marched in the New South Wales coastal town of Murwillumbah, in protest against coal seam gas (CSG) mining. Another 1,000 protestors held a rally in Sydney’s inner-west, and more rallies are likely across the country in the week ahead.

That follows the NSW state government’s comments that CSG mining is inevitable. Protestors are concerned that governments are not doing enough to protect the environment from coal seam gas mining, and fears that CSG miners have unlimited access to any part of the state, including water catchment areas and prime agricultural land.

There are also fears that problems like those already experienced in Queensland will affect farmers and other land owners in NSW. Gas wells that leak, contamination and depletion of the water supply, and heavy-handed dealings by the major CSG companies are all issues that have been raised in that state. Farmers have also complained about not being compensated adequately, while the value of their land has fallen, due to the presence of gas wells.

There are more than 450 CSG wells drilled each year in Queensland by companies including Santos Limited (ASX: STO)Origin Energy (ASX: ORG) and Drillsearch Energy (ASX: DLS), with many already producing. Queensland’s Bowen and Surat Basins alone contain massive gas resources – in fact so much, that there are plans for multiple liquefied natural gas (LNG) plants in Queensland, with much of the gas coming from CSG wells. 70% of the gas used in the state currently comes from CSG.

With south-eastern Australia’s main gas supply from South Australia’s Cooper Basin due to decline in a few years (according to AGL Energy), new sources of energy need to be found. Because of the large coal deposits in Queensland and New South Wales, supplies of CSG are plentiful, and its close location to major markets means it’s a cheaper alternative than other gas resources such as Western Australia’s Northwest Shelf. The other issue is CSG is mainly made up of methane, a greenhouse gas that retain 20 times more heat in the atmosphere than carbon dioxide and contributing to global warming (again, according to AGL Energy), so its better for the environment to be captured and used.

You can see why there’s pressure on the NSW government to allow CSG mining to go ahead. Let’s hope they’ve learnt a thing or two from Queensland’s experience.

If you only invest in one company this year, make it our “Top Stock for 2012-13”. Operating in two hot markets — one set to double by 2012, the other predicted to grow 5x over the next five years — this stock is a solid growth play that also boasts strong recurring revenue, zero debt, and lots of cash. Get its name and full research case in this brand-new FREE report.

Editor’s note: The original version of this article included Beach Energy (ASX: BPT) as a Coal Seam Gas producer. Beach does not produce Coal Seam Gas.

More reading

Motley Fool writer/analyst Mike King owns shares in Drillsearch. The Motley Fool’s purpose is to help the world invest, better. Take Stock is The Motley Fool’s free investing newsletter. Packed with stock ideas and investing advice, it is essential reading for anyone looking to build and grow their wealth in the years ahead. Click here now to request your free subscription, whilst it’s still available. This article contains general investment advice only (under AFSL 400691). Authorised by Bruce Jackson.

Wondering where you should invest $1,000 right now?

When investing expert Scott Phillips has a stock tip, it can pay to listen. After all, the flagship Motley Fool Share Advisor newsletter he has run for over ten years has provided thousands of paying members with stock picks that have doubled, tripled or even more.*

Scott just revealed what he believes could be the five best ASX stocks for investors to buy right now. These stocks are trading at near dirt-cheap prices and Scott thinks they could be great buys right now.

*Returns as of January 12th 2022

More on ⏸️ Investing

Close up of baby looking puzzled
Retail Shares

What has happened to the Baby Bunting (ASX:BBN) share price this year?

It's been a volatile year so far for the Aussie nursery retailer. We take a closer look

Read more »

woman holds sign saying 'we need change' at climate change protest
ETFs

3 ASX ETFs that invest in companies fighting climate change

If you want to shift some of your investments into more ethical companies, exchange-traded funds can offer a good option

Read more »

a jewellery store attendant stands at a cabinet displaying opulent necklaces and earrings featuring diamonds and precious stones.
⏸️ Investing

The Michael Hill (ASX: MHJ) share price poised for growth

Investors will be keeping an eye on the Michael Hill International Limited (ASX: MHJ) share price today. The keen interest…

Read more »

ASX shares buy unstoppable asx share price represented by man in superman cape pointing skyward
⏸️ Investing

The Atomos (ASX:AMS) share price is up 15% in a week

The Atomos (ASX: AMS) share price has surged 15% this week. Let's look at what's ahead as the company build…

Read more »

asx share price competitions represented by businessmen arm wrestling
Retail Shares

How does the Temple & Webster (ASX:TPW) share price stack up against Nick Scali (ASX:NCK)?

How does the Temple & Webster (ASX: TPW) share price stack up against rival furniture retailer Nick Scali Limited (ASX:…

Read more »

A medical researcher works on a bichip, indicating share price movement in ASX tech companies
Healthcare Shares

The Aroa (ASX:ARX) share price has surged 60% since its IPO

The Aroa (ASX:ARX) share price has surged 60% since the Polynovo (ASX: PNV) competitor listed on the ASX in July.…

Read more »

asx investor daydreaming about US shares
⏸️ How to Invest

How to buy US shares from Australia right now

If you have been wondering how to buy US shares from Australia to gain exposure from the highly topical market,…

Read more »

person reading news on mobile phone
⏸️ Investing

Why Fox (NASDAQ:FOX) might hurt News Corp (ASX:NWS) shareholders

News Corporation (ASX: NWS) might be facing some existential threats from its American cousins over the riots on 6 January

Read more »