Regional farmers and activists have described the state government move as “ridiculous” and “propaganda”.
Gurley farmer Penny Blatchford and Caroona farmer Tim Duddy said the government should be focusing on the science behind the industry rather than the public relations.
“It sounds better to call it natural gas coming from coal seams because coal seam gas has a bad name, deservedly,” Mrs Blatchford said. “The government has realised that coal seam gas hasn’t become an accepted industry.
“Calling it something else isn’t going to change the fact that we don’t have the complete science behind coal seam gas.
“A name change won’t stop my commitment to ensuring the regulation, legislation and policies are balanced in protecting the community.”
Mr Duddy said the change wouldn’t stop community concern around the industry.
“What they need to do is put in the work to prove that coal seam gas extraction is safe and worthwhile, not trying to do a public relations exercise with a name change,” he said.
“If they called asbestos fibro and kept using it in houses, would it make people feel any better?
“The community has genuine fears and those fears need to be addressed by proving that there’s no harm to the water resource.”