Graziers in Queensland's remote Channel Country are alarmed by recently announced plans to open up the iconic Cooper Creek to fracking for unconventional shale oil and gas. In February 2015 graziers called on the state government to enact permanent, statutory protection for rivers, wetlands and floodplains. Having seen the "growing evidence of groundwater contamination, ruined lives and ruined rivers" elsewhere, the graziers made the following points:

  • The sustainable and compatible beef and tourism industries cannot coexist with a water-intensive and polluting industry
  • Cooper Creek is one of the last intact desert rivers on the planet
  • Without the flow from Cooper Creek there is no future in the Channel Country
  • There are abundant alternatives to fossil fuels as energy sources but there are absolutely no substitutes for water

US farmers also dispute the industry's persistent claims that fracking and farming can co-exist.