Fracking has been banned for five years by the Tasmanian government

A fracking gas field in the US. Photo: Bruce Gordon at EcoFlight.

The controversial mining practice of fracking has been banned for another five years by the Tasmanian government.

Initially the ban, introduced by Tasmanian Primary Industries Minister Jeremy Rockliff in March 2014, was for just one year but will now extend until 2020.

“There is considerable concern around the potential negative impacts of fracking… It is also clear that there is considerable concern for landowners’ rights and public and environmental health,” said Rockliff, who received 155 submissions to continue the ban.

The practice has sparked controversy in New South Wales and Queensland, as some are worried the full impact of the process it not yet known.

Victoria already has its own moratorium on the practice, which involves injecting liquid at high pressure into underground rocks to extract oil or gas. There have been calls for similar bans in Western and South Australia.

Despite the temporary ban, Rockliff said it was not a complete end to fracking, with three companies awarded special licences to continue with limited exploration.

A review into fracking will be conducted before the moratorium expires in March 2020.

The ABC has more.

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