Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Riverina Wasteland

We are bemused with Mr Funnell's intention to enmesh the DLP with the likes of the Katter Party and various others (which Katter refers) to form a supposed "third party force" - actually a "third establishment party force". The interesting point we observe here is: why would the DLP, a historical Australian political party of great significance and fundamentally an Australia- centric party, in the sense of protectionism for Australian industry and agriculture, form an alliance with establishment internationalists such as Katter or Palmer or any other sundry pretend patriots? This "third party force" will be nothing new and will result in the DLP cutting themselves off from what they are really about. This could be the political end for the DLP as we know it. As for Katter, time for a larger hat to fit the ego and delusions of grandeur about all that power to come with this so-called "third party force".
This imagined third force deserves careful scrutiny:
Regardless of how media and political pimps portray this new pie in the sky, would-be "third force, this nation has serious problems and cannot afford to be held hostage by a coalition of clowns, egotists and self interested people.
Interesting how Katter claims interest in the MIA as a food bowl, when he has pushed for years for the Northern Zone development, a plantation style development centred on growing food for China, resting on hordes of cheap contract labour. The irrigators of the MIA noted Katter's duplicity during the MDBP fiasco, when Katter said one thing to Riverina irrigators and the opposite in South Australia. A similar pattern has formed on the CSG issue regarding Katter. What has the Katter Party done about the devastation to land, air and water contamination (and land values) in Chinchilla/Tara QLD ? Nothing ! The people of the Riverina should acquaint themselves with the situation in Chinchilla/Tara and if that's the science, it belongs in the toilet. What will government and CSG companies be compensating the people of Chinchilla/Tara? Nothing!
Further the real reason for the MDBP "urgency" materialises. It was portrayed as an urgent need to return more water to the Murumbidgee for "environmental" flows; we now see it was really for more water for CSG, as every litre of water lost from aquifiers is then drained from the river. This is the standard multifaceted hidden agenda where the internationalist elites are concerned. We have come to understand, just like the situation in the USA's  San Joaquin Valley, where "environmental" flows to the Delta were also politically "urgent" and again the water was in reality for another purpose and is set to be diverted elsewhere. In that case local irrigators were the "acceptable" collateral damage to these elites. Again this reality shows Katter's" new" so-called third party force was always meant to be a third party farce.
 Mr Funnell should be congratulated for his sterling effort on the Wagga Council CSG Moratorium issue and he didn't need the would-be third wheelers to achieve that. The real potential for permanent contamination of the water supply is the single biggest issue regarding CSG. Many points of interest and matters of considerable concern were raised regarding CSG and water at the Council meeting. One wonders why with such high risk and possible permanent contamination of the water supply and a threat to life itself (humanity, plants and animals), for clearly short term gain, why would CSG be considered at all? Most CSG wells have a life span of only a few years, with 80% of gas extracted within the first two years. Is this CSG "utopia" just another "gold fever" boom and bust scheme set up by the moneyed classes, but with a sinister scenario regarding water ? Many Investors have raised serious concerns regarding "investment" in CSG and have warned the small investors won't even be notified if their investment has been written down until it's too late!

Consider this dialogue for a US publication:

Q: What are your thoughts on developments in recent years that have unlocked shale oil and gas? Some have said the U.S. energy boom is the most important development in political economy in decades.

A: I would urge people to go out and see what’s happening in the field. Yes, it was all very exciting in the beginning. But now we’re finding out that those wells are very short-life wells. Production dropped by 40 to 60 percent in the first year, and the demand for rigs to drill in the shale fields is down 75 percent in the last couple of years. The demand for pumps is down 50 percent.
So it’s not as much fun as we’d hope it would be. In some countries such as Poland, people have given up their shale leases, because they’ve realized it’s just not so simple. I read all the hype, but again I’d urge people to go into the fields and see what’s actually happened, rather than reading what journalists hype. Jim Rogers (10.3.14) American Investor and Commentator.

 The extremely rapid overall gas field declines require from 30 to 50 percent of production to be replaced annually with more drilling, a classic “tiger chasing its tail around the tree” syndrome. This translates to $42 billion of annual capital investment just to maintain current production. By comparison, all USA shale gas produced in 2012 was worth about $32.5 billion at a gas price of $3.40/mcf (which is higher than actual well head prices for most of 2012). That means about a net $10 billion loss on their shale gambles last year for all US shale gas producers.
Even worse, Hughes points out that capital inputs to offset field decline will necessarily increase going forward as the sweet spots within plays are drilled off and drilling moves to lower quality areas. Average well quality (as measured by initial productivity) has fallen nearly 20 percent in the Haynesville, the most productive shale gas play in the US. And it is falling or flat in eight of the top ten plays. Overall well quality is declining for 36 percent of US shale gas production and is flat for 34 percent.[28]
Not surprising in this context, the major shale gas players have been making massive write-downs of their assets to reflect the new reality. Companies began in 2012 reassessing their reserves and, in the face of a gas spot price that was cut in half between July 2011 and July 2012, are being forced to admit that the long-term outlook for natural-gas prices is not positive. The write-downs have a domino effect as bank lending is typically tied to a company’s reserves meaning many companies are being forced to renegotiate credit lines or make distress asset sales to raise cash.
Beginning August 2012, many large shale gas producers in the US were forced to announce major write-downs of the value of their shale gas assets. BP announced write-downs of $4.8 billion, including a $1 billion-plus reduction in the value of its American shale gas assets. England’s BG Group made a $1.3 billion write-down of its US shale gas interests, and Encana, a large Canadian shale gas operator made a $1.7 billion write-down on shale assets in the US and Canada, accompanied by a warning that more were likely if gas prices did not recover. [29]
The Australian mining giant BHP Billiton is one of the worst hit in the US shale gas bubble as it came in late and big-time. In May, 2012 it announced it was considering taking impairments on the value its US shale-gas assets which it had bought at the peak of the shale gas boom in 2011, when the company paid $4.75 billion to buy shale projects from Chesapeake Energy and acquiring Petrohawk Energy for $15.1 billion.[30]
But by far the worst hit is the once-superstar of shale gas, Oklahoma-based Chesapeake Energy.

So where to from here when we take the foregoing into account?  The MIA will be destroyed by CSG and the Riverina will cease to be a food bowl, but the mining must continue to then pay for all the imported food we will need domestically. Katter and the other two "establishment forces" (Lib/Lab) dream, that the Northern Zone (the food bowl of Asia) will continue to get on with the business of growing food for export to China while the Riverina will be barely habitable if at all, a toxic wasteland, a lasting legacy from the "CSG Utopia" (just like Chinchilla/Tara). Are some countries meant to be destroyed by CSG ? If that's the end result of it, would it be intended that way?

Is it a matter of convenience or coincidence that so many people are diverted away from the issue of the threat to safe drinking water and onto issues of same sex marriage, multiculturalism, refugees etc ? Could this also be the reason the drug scourge in our nation (now at crisis point) is left to fester, as people caught up in the misery of drug addiction are hardly going to protest the establishment line. It appears drugs such as ice and the damage it does have been a welcomed addition to the chaos. Quite obviously little is being done to address the drug issue, ensuring people remain bemused and confused as the agenda rolls on unabated. With agendas such as we see today underfoot, is it any wonder establishment internationalist parties and  are quite happy many of our people's voices are silenced via a drug induced altered state of reality? One would hope, no water to drink would be a major concern for all Australians?

Lorraine Sharp

NSW Chairman Australia First Party

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