THE renewal of a coal seam gas mining licence that covers Shoalhaven has sparked renewed local opposition to the industry.
In the past Numbaa dairy farmer Bruce Coulthart has seen bubbles rising to the surface of the Shoalhaven River but has seen no evidence to say they were caused by coal seam gas.
“I remember when we use to fish down at Numbaa wharf there were the odd bubbles. [Former mayor] Greg Watson reckons they’re gas, but I don’t know about that,” Mr Coulthart said.
Mr Coulhart said farmland in the Shoalhaven was too valuable to risk by allowing any mining.
“I think our farmland is too good and we wouldn’t get anything out of it.
“The mining company would probably put a great road through the farms,” he said.
Cr Watson said his father and uncle heard sometime between 1915 to 1920 that someone filled up a kerosene drum with water from the Shoalhaven River, captured the gas and sent if for testing and the test said it was natural gas.
“That’s only hearsay, but you can still see bubbles at high tide on the eastern side of where the Numbaa wharf was.
“I’m only assuming it is coal seam gas, it could be coming out of shale,” he said.