Chittering community to declare itself ‘gas field free’

Chittering community to declare itself ‘gas field free’

THE community of Chittering is set to declare itself ‘gas field free’ at an event on Sunday in Blackboy Ridge Park.

The declaration follows months of work that involved volunteers going road-by-road and door-to-door, asking neighbours if they would like to declare the locality of Chittering ‘gas field free’.

The extensive survey found a massive majority of the population of the area wanted to make the declaration.

The final tally of the results will be announced at the event.

Chittering is included in a gas exploration permit area covering a large part of the Swan Valley, Bullsbrook, Bindoon and further north.

Southern Sky Energy and Macallum Group Ltd, who have stated they are considering future unconventional gas production in the area, hold the permit.

Local resident and surveyor Debra Wilson from the Gas field Free Lake Chittering group said the results showed that those gas companies did not have a social licence to explore or drill in Chittering.

“We surveyed as many residents as we could in the locality of Chittering, and when we found people were not home we would leave them an information package with our contact details, in order to get their views on the declaration,” Mrs Wilson said.

“The people of Chittering have indicated clearly that gas fields are inappropriate in this region.”

Local landholder Toby Black said people lived in Chittering for the tranquillity.

“Chittering is a rural community with farms, tourism, wetlands, horses,” he said.

“We do not need or want a reckless gas industry coming into our region and turning our landscape into an industrialised gas field.

“Our water and air is precious to us, and to put our community at risk for a short term invasive gas industry is unacceptable, we have a right to say no.

“We are the first community in the Shire of Chittering area to declare itself ‘gas field free’ and we join more than 400 communities around Australia who have done the same.”

The community event is open to everyone and will include family-friendly entertainment, a stall with Lock the Gate triangles and stickers, and a cake and drinks stall.

The event will be held on Sunday from 4pm at Blackboy Ridge Park, 3231 Chittering Road, Chittering.