Senator Larissa Waters at a public meeting to talk about GKI.
Senator Larissa Waters at a public meeting to talk about GKI. Allan Reinikka

Waters claims Federal Govt CSG bill won't protect farmers

THE Greens say the Federal Government's bill to make water a trigger for federal intervention on coal seam gas and large coal mining approvals does not go far enough to protect communities.

Senator Larissa Waters said on Wednesday she would move an amendment for the government to retrospectively apply the new standards to previously approved projects.

If successful the amendment would extend to shale and tight gas mining, which Senator Waters said posed a risk to water resources in Victoria and Western Australia.

"The Environment Minister (Tony Burke) is ignoring the farming communities in Queensland and New South Wales where he has already approved major coal seam gas projects," Senator Waters said.

"It's too late for those communities where water quality and supply is already being put at risk, so I will move an amendment.

"As further evidence that the government is wedded to the mining industry, the Environment Minister is ignoring the potentially damaging impacts of shale and tight gas mining on water resources."

Mr Burke introduced the bill, which would amend the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Act, in the lower house on Wednesday.