Almost three quarters of South Australians want Kangaroo Island to be protected from planned oil and gas drilling, according to polling data released by the Australian Greens today.
A Lonergan poll of 1582 South Australians found only 16 per cent of voters supported the Bight Petroleum proposal for oil and gas exploration in the Kangaroo Island Canyon and Pools.
Australian Greens Senator for South Australia Sarah Hanson-Young said the polling also showed a majority of supporters from all political parties wanted South Australia's tourism icon to be protected from the threat of oil and gas drilling.
“It’s essential that this natural wonder be preserved but, with Tony Abbott set to become Prime Minister, our environmental laws are under attack," Senator Hanson-Young said.
“We know that the vast majority of South Australians, regardless of their political leanings, want to see Kangaroo Island protected but the old parties are refusing to guarantee its future.
"Losing the jewel in the South Australian tourism crown to oil and gas drilling would be a tragedy.
"The threat of an Abbott controlled Parliament is real and that's why voters in SA need to think seriously about who they vote for in the Senate.
"The Greens will stand up for SA and make sure that our environmental treasures are protected for generations to come."
Fellow Greens Senator for South Australia Penny Wright said the Australian Greens were standing with the Kangaroo Island community to raise awareness of the economic and environmental threat of oil and gas drilling in the area.
"Kangaroo Island's economy relies heavily on tourism and fishing. Both of these industries will be at risk if Bight Petroleum's application to conduct seismic testing off the coast of Kangaroo Island is approved," Senator Wright said.
"Kangaroo Island Mayor Jayne Bates has said Bight Petroleum's plans is ‘all risk and no gain' for her community, and it seems the vast majority of South Australians agree.
"The community has been waiting a long time for a decision on this and it's vital that, whoever the Environment Minister is after this election, they join with the Australian Greens and the majority of all South Australians in saying Kangaroo Island is just too precious to lose."
More information from the Lonergan poll conducted on behalf of the Australian Greens can be found here.
Sarah Hanson-Young – Noah Schultz-Byard 0427 604 760
Senator Penny Wright – Danielle Forsyth 0417 173 508