Member for Mount Gambier Troy Bell’s bid to legislate a 10-year ban on fracking in the South East of South Australia has passed the Lower House, following crucial Liberal Party support.
The Petroleum and Geothermal Energy (Ban on Hydraulic Fracking) Amendment Bill 2018 was introduced by the Independent MP in July.
On Wednesday morning, Liberal MP Nick McBride stood alongside Mr Bell outside State Parliament as South East anti-fracking activists delivered a petition containing the signatures of more than 4,000 residents in support of the ban.
Mr Bell said the Bill passing the Lower House is a “big win for the South East”.
"We passed a significant milestone today and for every resident, farmer and organisation that has contacted me across the last four years, this is a big win," he said.
“Importantly, this legislation will give a solid platform for all industries – whether it’s fishing, farming or mining, to move ahead with certainty across the next decade.
In his summing up, Mr Bell cited the case of Kalangadoo fifth-generation farmer David Smith as an indicator of how passionately the issue was felt throughout the South East region.
“David put $100,000 of his own money towards producing a documentary that highlights the impacts of fracking upon farmland,” he said.
“It’s important that our community has a voice in State Parliament, and today, that voice has been heard loud and clear.”