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New Seismic Blasting Inflicted on Northern Tasmania

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Media release – Surfrider Foundation & Wilderness Society Tasmania, 10 September 2021 New Seismic Blasting Inflicted on Northern Tasmania Northern Tasmania is facing an onslaught of seismic blasting, with the federal offshore oil and gas regulator (NOPSEMA) having just approved more seismic blasting in Bass Strait, this time by Beach Energy. The seismic blast site […]

Media release – Surfrider Foundation & Wilderness Society Tasmania, 10 September 2021

New Seismic Blasting Inflicted on Northern Tasmania

Northern Tasmania is facing an onslaught of seismic blasting, with the federal offshore oil and gas regulator (NOPSEMA) having just approved more seismic blasting in Bass Strait, this time by Beach Energy.

The seismic blast site is 75km east of King Island and 57km north of Stanley and overlaps Boags Australian Marine Park. The blasting can happen between Sept 2021 and Aug 2023.

“Northern Tasmania is under siege from oil and gas operators imposing themselves on our communities, bringing climate-wrecking fossil fuel expansion onto our doorstep,” said Tom Allen for the Wilderness Society Tasmania.

“These projects fundamentally threaten ‘brand Tasmania’. Tasmanians don’t benefit and many will be adversely impacted. ConocoPhillips, Beach Energy and the Morrison government are treating locals like mushrooms, with little information and tokenistic consultation.

“Local communities are vocally opposed and know that their communities, marine ecosystems and clean, green, brand are being devalued. The fact is that these projects are Tasmanian PR disasters, being imposed on Tasmanians by the Morrison government.

“Tasmanian Federal politicians have gone to ground on this. Their communities need protecting from these threats. Livelihoods are at stake.

“Senator Peter Whish-Wilson and the ALP’s Braddon candidate Chris Lynch have been clear in their opposition to this exploitation of Tasmania and its communities. We need to hear where other candidates and representatives stand,” said Mr Allen.

Recreational fisher from Stanley, Jeff Power, said that he was concerned about the impacts of Beach Energy’s seismic blasting. “Local fishers aren’t going to be happy if this impacts their whitebait and flathead catches. As well as the disturbance to the dolphins and whales migrating through this area,” said Mr Power.

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“The coastal waters around Stanley and the islands on the northeast coast of Tasmania are prized fishing grounds for species like whiting and flathead and large numbers of fish are known to spawn in this area. Research conducted by Fisheries Research and Development Corporation (FRDC) found a 99.5% loss in whiting catch rates after seismic testing in the Gippsland basin in 2019,” said Ally King of Surfrider Tasmania.

Additional comments from Ally King

“Locals around the northwest coast say they have not been informed or consulted about the Beach Energy seismic testing application and are also unaware of the impacts. The whiting fishery is of great concern as it brings a lot of people to the area, particularly in the spring and summer when this testing is planned. This influx of fishers help support all types of local businesses.”

“This area currently has several proposals for other industries, like salmon farming. I am concerned there has been a lack of marine spatial planning for this area. It is imperative that cumulative impacts from the range of industries are assessed.”

“Australia currently exports over 80% of gas overseas. It is inevitable that we must switch to renewables and soon. We must actively think ahead, about long-term food and job security. The ocean is the greatest resource we have on Earth, and it is idiotic to jeopardise it for the sake of short-term profits for a dying industry,” 

International Energy Agency says no new oil and gas

Fatih Birol, the IEA’s executive director and one of the world’s foremost energy economists, told The Guardian: “If governments are serious about the climate crisis, there can be no new investments in oil, gas and coal, from now – from this year.” 

Net Zero by 2050: A Roadmap for the Global Energy Sector, Flagship report — May 2021, IEA 

The Tasmanian Government’s submission to the Senate’s Seismic Blasting Inquiry shows seismic blasting ‘permanently’ harms invertebrates like rock lobsters. 

 

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Source: Tasmanian Times https://www.tasmaniantimes.com/2021/09/new-seismic-blasting-inflicted-on-northern-tasmania/#utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=new-seismic-blasting-inflicted-on-northern-tasmania

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