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Understorey: Civil Society and the Fracking Democratic Deficit

Wednesday 11th October / posted by Under Storey

While the federal government hints it may take GST money off those states that refuse unconventional gas licences on environmental grounds,  the Western Australian Labor government has delivered its commitment to set up a public inquiry into fracking. A panel of independent scientists has been appointed, but civil society groups have been quick to ask for the inquiry’s narrow terms of reference to take in the full social, economic and environmental impacts of the unconventional gas industry. Like the Wilderness Society and Lock the Gate, Piers Verstegen, Director of the Conservation Council of Western Australia, wants the environmental, natural resources and social dangers of fracking to be fully accounted for – so that governments takes proper account of civil society, as well as the corporations seeking profits, in making environmental policy.

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