Western Australia announces moratorium on hydraulic fracturing

Reuters News
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Posted: Sep 05, 2017 5:26 AM

SYDNEY (Reuters) - Western Australia state (WA) will ban onshore hydraulic fracturing while it looks into the risks associated with the drilling technique, its environment minister said on Tuesday, making it the fifth Australian state to restrict the practice.

The state of Victoria has banned hydraulic fracturing, or "fracking", as well as shale and coal-seam gas exploration, while the Northern Territory, New South Wales and Tasmania have moratoriums.

"We appreciate there is a level of community concern around fracking in WA, which is why we are commissioning an independent scientific inquiry," said Environment Minister Stephen Dawson in a statement posted to his website.

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(Reporting by Tom Westbrook; Editing by Christian Schmollinger)