Little chance of “logical, science-based policy” on LNG

ALL the technology in the world is useless if people hate you - that was the message heard by a Texas gas conference featuring some of the industry's most powerful players.

Federal Resources Minister Gary Gray gave the keynote address during the LNG17 event, this year held in Houston.

It is considered the most important event for the world gas industry, which takes in the contentious coal seam, shale and liquefied natural gas sectors.

Mr Gray said Australia has little chance of having "sensible, logical, science-based policy" on gas if the industry did not improve its credentials.

It was time, he said, to use some of its funding, research and influence to build community support.

"Sometimes, activists are not about improving regulations or their environment, but about spreading fear and confusion," he said.

"Industry needs to argue its case in every possible way, to stand aside from necessary commercial rivalries for a common good and accept that these days a community perception in one part of the world very quickly becomes a problem for all."

The strength of anti-coal seam gas activists in Australia has grown exponentially through organisations including Lock the Gate.

Mr Gray's comments follow new restrictions placed on the coal seam gas sector at both federal and state levels.

The Gillard Government now has a "water trigger" which forces major projects consuming a large amount of water to undergo a more stringent process.

New South Wales introduced restrictions on CSG exploration and extraction after widespread opposition.