NSW's peak mining organisation has launched a campaign to counter growing opposition to coal seam gas extraction as hundreds rally in western Sydney.
NSW Minerals Council CEO Stephen Galilee says "activists and extremists" are using fear, rather than facts, to further an anti-mining agenda.
He says the council's Land Use Facts campaign will include a blitz of TV ads.
"The campaign ... is being launched as part of the industry's ongoing efforts to improve community understanding of the NSW mining industry," Mr Galilee said in a statement yesterday.
The launch came as about 300 residents attended a rally in Campbelltown yesterday to call on the NSW government to protect drinking water, local communities and farmland from CSG development.
Last month the state government announced a two-kilometre "buffer zone" around residential areas and exclusion zones around horse breeders and wine producers.
Campbelltown resident Len Williamson said too many communities remained exposed to potential health risks from CSG.
"We are calling on the government to rule out coal seam gas exploration and mining in Sydney's drinking water catchments," he said.
Councillor Fred Borg, who organised the rally, denied anti-CSG groups were fear-mongering.
"[The Minerals Council] is just trying to protect the almighty dollar, they don't have any concerns about our health," he said.
Mr Galilee said mining accounted for only about 0.1 per cent of the state's land, compared to 76 per cent for agriculture, 7.6 per cent for conservation and national parks and 1.8 per cent for homes and urban development.
NSW got an excellent economic return from the land used for mining and employed 80,000 people in NSW, he said. AAP