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The South Australian Government is partnering with CSIRO to conduct research into the social and environmental impact of the gas industry in the Otway Basin.

CSIRO will conduct in depth research into the social and environmental impacts of gas production in the South East. The partnership will enable CSIRO’s Gas Industry Social and Environmental Research Alliance (GISERA) to conduct studies on the impacts on key issues concerning communities within the onshore Otway Basin.

Minister for Mineral Resources and Energy, Tom Koutsantonis, said partnering with the CSIRO provides South Australia with an opportunity to generate a wealth of independent research to gauge the impact of the gas industry on the state’s South East.

“By working with the local community, GISERA will also be able to generate high-quality scientific research to better inform the development of South Australia’s Oil and Gas Strategy.

“Many of the concerns about water quality and the socio-economic impacts of the gas industry on neighbouring primary industries will be addressed by this research project.”

Director of CSIRO’s Gas Industry Social and Environmental Research Alliance, Dr Damian Barrett, said GISERA has established a proven research program, governance structure and processes in Queensland and New South Wales to ensure independence, transparency and integrity.

“We will be taking that same approach to the research undertaken in South Australia. A South Australian Regional Research Advisory Committee is being established, including a majority of independent members, which independently reviews research proposals on the range of science questions which the community, government and local industry seek answers to in the South East.

“We look forward to working with the communities in the South East to develop a study program that will deepen our knowledge of the social and environmental impacts of the onshore gas industry in the Otway Basin.”

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