- Legislation passed in the Victorian Legislative Council, the upper house of the Victorian parliament, for a permanent legislative ban on fracking to protect the ‘clean, green’ reputation of Victoria’s agriculture sector, which employs more than 190,000 people. The Bill permanently bans all onshore unconventional gas exploration and development, including hydraulic fracturing (‘fracking’) and coal seam gas, and extends the moratorium on conventional onshore gas exploration and development to 30 June 2020.
- The extension to the moratorium on conventional gas exploration will allow the Government to carry out a comprehensive program of geo-scientific research and to look and assess the potential risks, benefits and impacts of onshore conventional gas and development. This work will be overseen by Victoria’s lead scientist in consultation with an expert panel made up of farmers, industry, local government and community members.
- Minister for Resources Wade Noonan said, “This is a historic day for our state. We promised we would ban fracking – and that is exactly what we have done. This is a win for people power and regional communities across Victoria who have campaigned for years to see this ban in place.”
- Minister for Agriculture Jaala Pulford said, “Fracking has been resoundingly rejected in our regional communities. We’re putting our farmers first and protecting their world-class produce and our environment.”
- Friends of the Earth Melbourne said in a blog post: "This is an amazing day. It is the result of more than five years of hard work and dedication by many thousands of Victorians. 75 regional communities declared themselves gasfield free during this process. By 2012 we had built enough collective power that we were able to stop all development of onshore gas drilling in our state. Today the ban on fracking was made permanent."
Read a summary of the community campaign that started in 2009.
- Here is how the final debate panned out via twitter: