Crunch time for Liberals on fracking - can they be trusted to keep their word?

On Wednesday afternoon, the Upper House of State Parliament will vote on a Greens’ Bill to ban fracking for gas in the South East region of South Australia. 

“The Liberal Party will have a chance to show whether their state election promise for a 10 year moratorium on fracking for gas in the South East was a genuine commitment or just a lot of hot air,” said Greens MLC, Mark Parnell.

The Greens’ Bill – Petroleum and Geothermal Energy (Moratorium on Hydraulic Fracturing) Amendment Bill – is simply the Liberals’ pre-election commitment put into law.

A bus load of residents from the South East will be in Parliament watching the debate and the vote on Wednesday afternoon.

“Alongside South East residents, the Greens know that with a four-year electoral cycle, a ten-year political promise is worth very little unless it’s legislated.  That’s why we want the new Liberal Government to enshrine the fracking ban in an Act of Parliament.  That way, even if the Government changes again at the next election or if the current leadership gets rolled before then, it will have to come back to Parliament to overturn the ban. 

“Without legislation, the moratorium is not worth the paper that it’s not even written on.  The Liberals’ current position - an “administrative” moratorium - is not good enough.  It just doesn’t cut it down in the South East, which is why the Greens have stepped in to make it happen,” concluded Mark Parnell.

The vote in the Upper House is expected to take place around 4pm, however campaigners from the South East will be on the steps of Parliament with their signs and placards from about 1.40pm on Wednesday to show MPs and the passing public that they expect the Libs to fulfil their fracking moratorium commitment.