A new database has been recommended that compares how much compensation farmers receive from coal seam gas operations.
In a final report by the Independent Pricing and Regulatory Tribunal (IPART), payments are recommended to be made to farmers for losses on the value of their land caused by the disturbance of drilling, dust, noise and other impacts on their property.
IPART made seven recommendations on how to estimate compensation rates for landholders negotiating coal seam gas agreements.
It also recommends gas companies pay compensation to affected neighbours and suggests the establishment of a voluntary register of CSG compensation payments.
IPART said the spreadsheet is intended as a guide and does not need to replace the current approach.
NSW Farmers policy director Danica Lees said in the past it had been virtually impossible to find out what a landholder was being paid for hosting a gas well, which had worked to the CSG industry’s advantage.
“It makes a lot of sense to have a database where the identifying information can be taken out of these agreements,” Ms Lees said.
But some farmers believe the report has not addressed the core issue of contamination.
“I think it’s lip service,” Julie Lyford from the Groundswell Gloucester group said.
“When you look at the map of NSW, more than 75 per cent of the local government councils have said no to coal seam gas now because the dangers of contamination are too great.”