Koalas tell Santos: get ‘on ya bike’

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MEDIA RELEASE, 19 January 2013

Northwest NSW politician and cycling koalas tell Santos: get ‘on ya bike’ and drop the Gunnedah project

Victoria Square Adelaide, Saturday January 19, 11.30am

• Santos’ toxic coal seam gas operations threaten Eastern Australia’s largest temperate woodland.

• Tour Down Under cyclists get clean water; NSW farmers want the same.

Cycling koalas have joined NSW politician and grazier David Quince and cyclists from around Australia to ride around Adelaide this morning to protest Santos’s destructive and toxic coal seam gas operations in Eastern Australia’s largest remaining temperate woodland and surrounding farmlands.

Koala Peloton

The Koala peloton an unsanctioned prologue to the Santos-sponsored Tour Down Under cycling race will circle Victoria Square from 11.30am before heading to Santos’s headquarters in Flinders Street.

“As far as we’re concerned, the real cycle that Santos is bringing to our region is a cycle of destruction from coal seam gas that will alienate some of our best farmland, risk our groundwater supplies and cause land values to plummet,” said David Quince, a NSW grazier and Gunnedah Shire Councillor.

“I have traveled to Adelaide to highlight how this project threatens the Liverpool plains, an iconic and important NSW food bowl.

The Wilderness Society’s Naomi Hogan said, “We’re cycling here today with a very different route to Santos, one that puts our communities, clean water and a healthy environment first.

“We have the greatest respect for this cycling event, but we don’t respect Santos efforts to sink gas wells in the Pilliga forest and risk the water supply of the Great Artesian Basin.

“We are here with a message for Santos ‘get on ya bike’ and leave our forest home free from your dangerous gas rigs, spills and leaking pipes.

“National treasures such as the Pilliga, which draw people from all around the world are now threatened by Santos’ gas drilling plans. Even the koala, recognised as a symbol of Australia internationally, faces an uncertain future if coal seam gas rolls out across the region.