Santos Ltd. Gas Operations in Narrabri
Santos Ltd. Gas Operations in Narrabri

Insurance denial over CSG on farms could be ‘worse than COVID’

A REFUSAL of public liability cover to producers with CSG operations on their properties is being heralded as a disaster ‘worse than COVID’ for the agricultural industry.

Peak industry body AgForce has voiced its concern for Australian farmers, whose livelihoods could be at risk if they have no insurance, because a company won’t cover their property if it has coal seam gas infrastructure.

AgForce CEO Michael Guerin said the group’s biggest concern is the fact that Australia’s biggest insurers are refusing to cover the needs of rural people.

“Australia’s $66 billion agriculture industry had been deemed an ‘essential service’ by the Federal Government and is seen as critical to the nation’s post-COVID economic recovery,” Mr Guerin said.

“But without insurance, farmers can’t farm – this could have devastating implication for thousands of primary producers, their families, their communities and the nation itself.

“So far, only two insurers – albeit Australia’s largest – have taken this unreasonable stance, but where they lead others may follow.”

Over the coming weeks, into a new financial year, thousands of producers will be facing the prospect of renewing their public liability insurance.

Mr Guerin said AgForce wants an appropriate response from the insurance companies.

“This not only affects producers who currently have CSG infrastructure on their properties – a situation which is basically mandated and not voluntary – but the many on whose gas exploration is going on for future development.

“We are calling on the insurance industry to do the right thing, and for Government’s to mandate a solution, if necessary, to protect thousands of Australian farmers who have CSG infrastructure on their properties through no action or desire of their own.


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