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Nanna’s Come Marching Home

knitting-nanasWe Made It – Nannas Come Marching Home after 1,005.5 Kilometer Walk to the Tip of Cape York The 12 Knitting Nannas Against Gas/Greed who left Cairns on 17 June 2015 to walk 1000 kilometers between Cairns and the tip of Cape York (Pajinka) on the Nanna Dreaming Project, exceeded their target by 5.5 kilometers, despite five Nannas returning home early, support vehicle trouble at Moreton and Laura, heat, dust and exhaustion.

Nine of the Nannas from Gloucester and Lismore in New South Wales, and Brisbane, Cairns and Daintree in Queensland, will reunite this morning at the Cairns Cruise Liner Terminal, Trinity Wharf at 9.30 – 10.00 am to celebrate the successful conclusion of the walk.

SpokesNanna for the group, Nanna Purl Stockingstitch (aka MaryBeth Gundrum) said that the support from Cape York residents and tourists was consistently good.

Nanna Purl said “The support along the way was absolutely amazing – the Nannas were assisted by two bush mechanics to fix ‘Canhardly’ an older four wheel drive that limped into Lakeland on Saturday after major mechanical problems at Moreton and Laura on Cape York, and people who gave donations of food and fuel to help the Nannas reach the top of Australia.” “We thought we might meet some people who would not like our mission, but even CSG mine workers talked to the Nannas about the negative impacts on communities caused by unconventional coal seam gas mining”.

Highlights of the trip were meeting the weaving women of Cape York and First Nation people from all over Cape York at the Laura Dance Festival, a smoking ceremony by Traditional Owners, being walked off country by several groups of traditional owners and a Dingo Gorgeous (Coyote Ugly) performance dancing on tables at Coen which has gone viral on FaceBook.

“Some of the Nannas in their sixties and seventies have been pulling 20 to 25 kilometers a day, without a single day off since we left Laura – they are incredible and should be lauded as national heroes.” Nanna Purl said.

The Nannas were joined by two documentary makers, Dan Hodgson from Cooktown and ‘Celestial Serpent’ (Mathew Marsh) from Byron Bay on the journey and are now trying to raise funds through crowd sourcing to complete the documentary which will be free to air as soon as they have raised enough funds to complete the Nanna Dreaming Project documentary.

People can support the project at – www.planetfunder.org/projects/Nanna-Dreamin

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Coal Seam Gas production has been dealt a mortal blow

LNG returns wiped out for State Government

from the Maritime Executive

Over a dozen liquefied natural gas (LNG) tankers are parked, many idle, in and around Singapore – one of the world’s biggest trading hubs for the fuel – in a sign that the slowdown engulfing world gas markets may be worsening into a crisis.

With Asian spot LNG prices down by almost two-thirds since February 2014 as slowing demand combines with rising output, shipping companies are parking their tankers close to ports like Singapore where unused ships can be easily maintained and serviced until new orders come in.

Leading ship brokers estimate over one-tenth of the global fleet of 400 LNG tankers is currently unused because of slowing growth in Asia’s biggest economies. The impact just in Singapore suggests the problem could be worse.

“There are currently 30 to 40 (oil and gas) tankers sitting in Singapore, many without anything to do,” said Javier Moret, head of LNG origination at Germany’s biggest power producer RWE during a conference in Singapore this week.

According to shipping data on Thomson Reuters, seven tankers have been sitting idle off the east coast of Johor, Malaysia, for over two weeks, and another two ships have been anchored south of Batam, Indonesia, for several months. Half a dozen LNG tankers are in Singaporean docks.

The 15 ships have a combined capacity to carry 2.26 million cubic metres of LNG, about two weeks’ worth of Singapore’s gas demand.

For shipowners, idled tankers mean a loss of $60,000 in daily chartering fees per vessel. The gas these 15 tankers can carry would be worth over $200 million in current market terms.

Around a year ago, that amount of LNG would have been worth almost $600 million.

Singapore’s location between producers in the Middle East, Australia and the Atlantic basin and large consumers in Japan, South Korea and China means that most tankers stop by here to take on fuel or undergo repair and maintenance work.

At least partly triggered by the oil price crash, gas markets have seen an Asian price premium over Europe drop from over $10 per million British thermal units (mmBtu) a year ago to a discount of over $1.50, making it unattractive to ship gas between the two regions and eroding tanker demand.

In Asia, LNG prices have fallen to around $6.90 per mmBtu from over $20/mmBtu a year ago. The benchmark British price, meanwhile, is around $8.50/mmBtu.

The crash in demand in Asia is so severe that some analysts say the future of the entire LNG industry may be impacted.

“The weakness in energy markets is threatening to derail LNG’s emergence as the pre-eminent energy source,” ANZ bank said this week in a research note.

TUMBLING TANKER RATES

Along with energy prices, tanker rates have also tumbled. British-based shipping services firm Clarkson says daily LNG charter rates have fallen from $90,000 in 2013 to $60,000 currently.

“Our view is that LNG freight rates will remain in the doldrums this year,” said Erik Stavseth, shipping analyst at Arctic Securities, adding that he only saw gradual improvement before 2018.

Traders said LNG tankers weren’t just being idled around Singapore, but that this was also an issue in the Atlantic basin where Europe’s economies struggle to return to growth.

The sharp fall in LNG prices and freight costs comes as slowing demand clashes with rising output.

Japan and South Korea, the world’s biggest LNG importers, have both reduced imports as their economies stutter.

An expected restart of Japanese nuclear power stations later this year following a shut-down in the wake of the reactor meltdowns at Fukushima in 2011 is expected to further pull down LNG demand.

With China’s economy growing at its lowest rate in over 20 years, imports there are also slowing, while at the same time as supplies are rising.

Australia’s LNG export capacity is set to more than triple to 86 million tons a year before 2020, putting it ahead of current leader Qatar which exports 77 million tons annually and U.S. expectations of selling 61.5 million tons per year by 2020.

Minimal local economic benefit from coal seam gas, Dimbulah meeting told

A Mareeba farmer has warned Tableland landowners that dealing with coal seam gas mining companies can take a heavy toll on family life, finances and the environment.

FNQ Lock the Gate Alliance has been holding meetings in the far north campaigning against unconventional gas extraction after an application to explore for coal and gas was made over the historic Mt Mulligan coal field, northwest of Dimbulah.

Speaking at a gathering of landowners at Dimbulah on Sunday, Kane Booth said his involvement with coal seam gas extraction on one of his farming properties had placed a heavy burden on his personal life and distracted from his ability to run the business.

“I have been dealing with gas companies wanting to access our family’s Chinchilla property for five years and it has been a big financial effort to fight them which has placed a hold on our feedlot business forcing us to sell cattle at a loss,” Mr Booth said.

The (CSG) fracking process had already destroyed a part of the underground water aquifer in the district where some water bore levels have dropped and he said that he had seen a film where bore water can be light with a match.

“I am warning the local traditional owners at Mt Mulligan that there will be very little money or jobs in any gas activities and I hope people don’t think they will be getting much work from this industry,” Mr Booth said.

“When the exploration stage finishes there will be no local jobs available because most companies use fly-in-fly-out workers.”

Protest group Knitting Nannas Against Gas (KNAG) spokeswoman Mary-Beth Gundrum said the evidence of adverse health effects from gas wells located near dwellings was overwhelming.

“Families in and around the Tara and Chinchilla areas have been bullied by the gas companies and had their health negatively impacted by fugitive gas,” Ms Gundrum said.

“These gas companies are 83 per cent-foreign owned and do not care about our economy or sending domestic gas prices through the roof.”

Atherton geologist Rob Ryan told the meeting that if proper gas drilling methods were used there was little chance of cross-contamination of water aquifers with gas or fracking chemicals.

He said he believed the Mt Mulligan gas field on its own would not contain sufficient reserves to sustain a local CSG industry.

Minister for Natural Resources and Mines Andrew Cripps said Calcifer Industrial Minerals Pty Ltd had applied for a permit under the Petroleum and Gas (Production and Safety) Act 2004 to explore for gas at Mt Mulligan.

“That application is going through a rigorous State Government assessment process and no decisions have yet been made whether or not to grant the permit application,” Mr Cripps said.

If granted, coal seam gas exploration could soon begin at Mt Mulligan.

Dimbulah businesswoman Gaye Taylor, geologist Rob Ryan, Mareeba farmer Kane Booth, and Djungan elder Maxene Thompson attended a coal seam gas meeting held at Dimbulah on Sunday.

Coal Seam Gas Rally Cairns

IT IS TIME TO CREATE THE NEW STATE OF NORTH QUEENSLAND

Coal Seam Gas exploration is about to start in Far North Queensland. A recent public information day held at Mareeba was visited by 150 people most of whom voiced their opposition to this insidious industry owned and operated by foreign companies, which are exploiting Australian gas reserves to the detriment of the future generation.

There will be little or no permanent work for local people of the districts in which the gas wells operate. There is no direct, lasting economic benefit to the people of Far North Queensland.

The environmental hazards associated with the ‘fracturing’ method of gas extraction threaten the very survival of underground water supplies. Hydrologists believe the Great Artesian Basin could be poisoned by chemical cocktails pumped underground into the fractured water aquifers and that these subterranean water reserves eventually could be contaminated and drained, effectively depopulating the interior of the State in time to come.

A drilling exploration company has been issued with a permit to explore known coal reserves at Mt Mulligan, west of Mareeba, in the iconic Mitchell River catchment.

This will be the start of the Far Northern CSG industry. The LNP State Government in totally controlled by the CSG industry and there will be no respite from it.

An alliance of indigenous groups, conservationists and land owners has initiated the Cairns rally where more information about this destructive industry can be heard.

If you are serious about helping protect FNQ from this foreign-owned scourge come along to the information day at

FOGARTY PARK, CAIRNS ESPLANADE, SATURDAY AUGUST 2, STARTING AT 2PM

For more information please contact: csgcairns07@gmail.com

www.lockthegate.org.au or CSG free NQ on Facebook

Public clamour over gas crisis met with deafening silence in election

Soon we will be paying double for our own gas, ignored by LNP

Remember readers the Liberal Party and the Labor Party are owned lock, stock and barrel by the gas and oil companies

15 August 2103: KAP Federal Leader and Member for Kennedy Bob Katter has challenged the would-be major party governments to prioritise the Australian people over profits for multinational resource giants and commit to reserving a percentage of Australia’s gas for domestic use.

Mr Katter said our industries, jobs and hip pockets needed urgent protection from looming massive power price increases commensurate with that paid by foreign buyers set to tap into Qld’s new gas export technology.

“This is a matter of national significance that should be front and centre in this election campaign, but don’t expect the major parties to bite the hand of the largely foreign-owned industry that feeds them,” he said.

Mr Katter said it was commonly accepted that Australian consumers can expect to four times current prices, to equal those paid by foreign buyers who are set to access the multi-billion-dollar liquification plants off Gladstone from 2014/15.

This means not only a significant cost-of-living slug to households, but also risks the viability of industries across Australia – from manufacturing to mining and food processing to fertiliser plants – which rely on gas to fuel their intensive energy needs, said Mr Katter.

“They’re writing contracts right now in terms of $9 a gigajoule up from $2-$3 a gigajoule,” warned Mr Katter after industry meetings in Mount Isa this week.

“The fertiliser industry, one of the most vital in any country, is already competing with countries that have a reserve policy to keep a percentage of the resource for the home market. But our mining industry, our steel industry, our food processing and manufacturing industries, and particularly the fertiliser industry… all are taking a huge hit on the major cost input of electricity.”

Mr Katter said base costs would explode Mount Isa – the hub of the world-class North West Minerals Province – which is not connected to the National Electricity Grid and reliant on expensive gas or diesel-powered energy.

“Yet we have the LNP’s would-be resources and energy minister last week telling people in Mount Isa – where for the first time in nearly 100 years there’s no more processing of copper – that their future is in more gas.

“Areas like Mount Isa could be very hard hit. But our government has married us into gas and now we are held to ransom by the gas industry.

“You only have to follow the money trail – now the federal LNP has refused to commit to $330m already on the table for the development of a nation-building clean energy corridor transmission link from Mount Isa-Townsville, and want more unconventional gas exploration instead.

“Just do the maths – it adds up to big profits for an industry almost entirely-owned by foreign interests and big losses for Australian householders and industries.

“The very least any responsible government would do as a basic duty of care to the country would be to safeguard people and industries by reserving some of the natural resources being exploited purely for the benefit of multinational corporations.”

CSG moratorium critically important as risks to aquifers exposed

CSG moratorium Bill critically important as risks to aquifers exposed

2 April 2013: KAP Leader and Federal Member for Kennedy Bob Katter says that the CSG aquifer drilling moratorium Bill he introduced in parliament should be implemented immediately after last night’s Four Corners program highlighted a flawed approval process which fails to properly address environmental risks to water supplies.

Mr Katter’s Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Amendment (Moratorium on Aquifer Drilling Connected with Coal Seam Gas Extraction) Bill 2013 that was introduced earlier this year places a moratorium on aquifer drilling for coal seam gas extraction.

In response to the story Mr Katter said, “The Four Corners exposé provides further evidence that the gas companies are running the State”.

Earlier in the year, Mr Katter told Parliament of reports that some 18,000 wells had already been agreed to by the Queensland Government – but even that may not be enough to make the three liquefaction plants in Gladstone economically viable, according to media reports.

“And all of these wells are going down in the very productive agricultural areas of Queensland, not in the bad-land areas where no one is going to give a damn”.

Mr Katter warned of the potentially catastrophic social and economic costs of CSG aquifer drilling contaminating the Great Artesian Basin, the lifeblood of Australia’s cattle and sheep industries, which produce about one-third of Australia’s agricultural export earnings and tens of thousands of jobs.

“If the underground aquifer was to be contaminated, or if it was to run down to a level where we could not economically extract water, then all of those industries would be impacted,” Mr Katter said.

“The ethanol industry has been sacrificed, major industrial operations have been compromised and Australian industries now have their backs forced up against the wall as a result of ridiculously high water charges”.

Meanwhile, as confirmed in the Four Corners report, Australia’s gas industry was almost completely foreign-owned, added Mr Katter.

“So what will Australia get out of it? Clearly, one of the things we are going to get out of it is mildly and sometimes seriously contaminated aquifers. But a very serious loss of our underground water supply.

“It’s appalling that the industries that reap great benefits for Australia like seafood, farming and cattle are having their water applications rejected for a measly 5 mega litres a month while local CSG operations have no trouble in getting 40 million litres a month from an industry that provides no financial benefits to the Australian community.

“Is it more important to make foreign corporations rich than to protect the future of our landholders and contamination of our water?

“There’s no money in it for Australia but I suspect there’s lots of money in it for the ALP-LNP corporations,” Mr Katter said.

ENDS