The Australian, July 13, 2013
Origin Energy chief executive Grant King said the lack of the "social licence" to operate was the opinion of a small group, a view, he said, not supported by evidence. "The term social licence does not have a legal meaning. The company's licence to operate is provided by the government through comprehensive environmental consenting processes that set the terms and conditions by which the company can operate."
Rob Millhouse, vice-president policy and corporate affairs of BG Group's Australian subsidiary QGC, said its polling had consistently showed a strong majority of people in its project area supported its project and the industry.
"The Greens saying our projects are uneconomic because we don't have a social licence is akin to Robert Mugabe saying Australia is undemocratic because we have free and fair elections," he said."With about 8 per cent of the popular vote, we are not sure the Greens have a licence to object to or stop an industry that has created about 100,000 jobs in the past year and involves an investment of $65bn in Queensland alone. We are investing $20bn because our project is economic."
Richmond Valley Council Poll
A poll conducted by the Richmond Valley Council, which is based in Casino, found that 70% of the community were somewhat supportive, supportive or very supportive of the following position:
If the Coal Seam Gas industry in the Richmond valley resulted in increased employment; economic welfare for the region and was appropriately regulated and proven to be environmentally safe, how supportive would you be of Richmond Valley Council working with CSG stakeholders and regulators to ensure the community benefit from this industry?
The same poll found that 42% of the population described themselves as “somewhat knowledgable “ of the coal seam gas industry, with only 23% describing themselves as very knowledable or knowledgable. Metgasco will aim to increase general community understanding.