Our world is in the midst of a mass extinction of life with scientists estimating that globally we lose 150-200 species of plant, insect, bird and mammal every 24 hours. Liminal Space explores issues of extinction and de-extinction while questioning those political decisions that place our environment in jeopardy.
Subterranean Gold references the Great Artesian Basin, Australia’s amazing under-ground freshwater supply found underneath over one fifth of the continent. Springs and seeps from the many aquifers within the Basin have enabled Aboriginal people to live in dry inland areas for more than 40,000 years whilst maintaining cultural, social and spiritual connections with those springs and the life that they support.
Today the Basin remains a vital resource for 120 towns, 7,600 businesses and 180,000 people1. Despite differing geological and scientific theories as to the formation of these aquifers it is acknowledged that a number of seeps and bores have run dry and in others there has been a reduced water flow. Many of these have been capped in an effort to reduce the water loss.
Some geologists such as Professor Lance Endersbee2 believe the water supply to be finite, our rainfall not capable of replenishing the water reserves. In spite of this, State and Federal Governments continue to give approval to industries for the extraction of coal seam gas, open cut and underground coal mining, all of which require a huge amount of water and continually pose the threat of contamination to the aquifers with toxic run off going in to waterways.