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Coal Seam Gas Mining

Discussion in 'Politics' started by Cutter, Aug 17, 2011.

  1. Clawhammer Allen Oxlade (6)

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  2. Mr Doug Trevor Allan (34)

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    C'mon Clawhammer, MMfA! ... If I wanted to read articles from that side of politics, I'd stay onshore and read 'Green Left Weekly', at least I know one of the contributors to that publication.
  3. Cutter Nicholas Shehadie (39)

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    http://www.smh.com.au/environment/f...oalseam-gas-20111027-1mlbu.html#ixzz1bz9f8yKm
  4. Cutter Nicholas Shehadie (39)

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    This is a bit more interesting including the bolded para at the end. This is such a big issue and only GetUp is agitating about it with any seriousness.

    http://www.smh.com.au/national/ener...as-projects-20111027-1mm53.html#ixzz1c0V5ilr1

  5. kambah mick Chris McKivat (8)

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    I cant help thinking a moratorium on CSG for a decade or so until lots more research is done would be a good thing. We have oceans of natural gas, as does PNG nearby. Damage to water reserves would in all likelihood be permanent. The conservative approach would be best.
  6. Scotty Simon Poidevin (60)

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    So APPEA's COO is basically admitting they don't know the full extent of the possible damage and yet the Qld State government lets them roll along on their merry way?

    Bligh and Beattie have a lot to answer for. Firstly allowing infrastructure investment to lag behind, and then spending everything at once so they now have to sell off assets and sell their souls to get back on track.
  7. Cutter Nicholas Shehadie (39)

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    Agreed Scotty. And all with the implicit blessing of successive federal governments. Having done a bit of research on this, I suspect we'll be lamenting this for years to come.
    Scotty likes this.
  8. Scotty Simon Poidevin (60)

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    Looks like a positive development on this front yesterday when Oakeshott and Windsor won mining tax concessions to apply greater environmental testing to potential coal seam gas operations.

  9. kambah mick Chris McKivat (8)

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    Shows the benefits of independents in Parliament. Even if the main parties agreed with this measure, they likely wouldnt have had the guts to implement it in fear of losing financial backing from the energy companies.
    Cutter likes this.
  10. Karl Bill McLean (32)

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    SSRC sure look credible. And they write so well. Obviously educated and savvy individuals. I must add them to my subscribed links and favourites immediately. No really, good online entertainment is so hard to find in the YouTube generation with so many talentless hacks competing for their 15 minutes of fame.

    As for CSG and UCG - it's potentially important technology but it's risks need to be fully understood and the industry tightly regulated before the law of unintended consequences comes into play and we find that we have destroyed a far more important resource letting some very rich and powerful Corporations boost their share price and executive bonuses.
  11. Karl Bill McLean (32)

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  12. Ruggo Paul McLean (56)

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  13. Scotty Simon Poidevin (60)

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    It is a good source of information, however I have recently found out that it may be factually incorrect in multiple places, particularly regarding the quantities of water and salt produced. APPEA has referred the errors to the managing director of the ABC for investigation. ABC has also removed a section that claimed Origins CSG emissions would be ten times higher than what they actually would be.
  14. Karl Bill McLean (32)

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    I think its pretty clear that:

    1. CSG is exploding in terms of wells being drilled and intensity of activity
    2. The process they use, particularly the fraccing, is doing some serious geological stuff, deep underground
    3. This aforesaid stuff is often happening near underground water sources, aquifers etc
    4. No-one is really sure what impact it is having but what we do know isn't exactly good
    5. Despite this, nothing substantive is being done to make sure CSG isn't our next enviromental disaster.

    When you break it down, it seems really simple. Moratorium on new wells, set time frame for serious r and d on environmental impacts, report done by someone trustworthy and uncorrupted, formulate and pass legislation to regulate the industry properly and ensure resposnible practices and remediation.
  15. Scotty Simon Poidevin (60)

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    While I agree that we need more research, and more surety on this subject, I also believe that some of the environmental disaster talk is being blown way out of proportion.

    My understanding is that the water sources, such as the great artesian basin are at a depth of around 100m, while most of the coal seams we are talking about are 500-1000m deep.

    The processing of the waste water (reverse osmosis) provides two products - basically pure water, and super salty waste water. The salty stuff is pumped into pools to evapourate and you end up with the salt (not sure what is done with this - apparently there may be some industrial uses for it). The pure stuff is so pure they have to actually add nutrients into it to be of any use (to say farmers).

    The government should require the companies involved to prove the whole process before they continue further, including all waste disposal options, but I don't think it helps when journos (particularly ABC ones) intentionally exaggerate the environmental concerns.
  16. Karl Bill McLean (32)

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    One of the big questions over it is whether the fraccing can damage the geology supporting the underground artesian water and the rocks around aquifers etc. And the coal seams they are after are on average 600 meters deep, with the water up to 300 meters deep. Plus the drill hole for the csg goes right through water table, basin etc.

    I'm sure some of the environmental stuff is being exaggerated, but I am equally sure that the CSG companies are pulling a Big Tobacco style "Its all perfectly safe" routine on us as well. Plus there is a lot we just don't know, and we need to know it. I think we SHOULD extract CSG, but we need to make sure we know how to do it without wrecking our underground water supplies - that would be monumentally stupid and only an apocalyptic dingleberry would risk it.
    Scotty and kambah mick like this.
  17. Scotty Simon Poidevin (60)

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    A senate committee called for a cease to new projects yesterday until independant and Qld government research was finalised.
  18. Gnostic Greg Davis (50)

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    Also a trust fund was mentioned to pay for the remediation of damaged caused by the CSG industry. I would like to know how you remediate an aquifer if it has been contaminated or perhaps worse still it collapses.

    My family has a long history in the mining industry and I can say it doesn't have a good record with regard to the environmental or even OH&S standards. The industry has done nothing to warrant trust from the community and has essential bought itself a licence to do as it pleases because of the huge sums it will pay to its workers, shareholders and governments whilst crushing any and all who get in the way.
  19. Cutter Nicholas Shehadie (39)

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    I don't have the links handy, but Santos is being blamed, and denying, for leaks at a CSG facility poisoning trees in the Pilliga scrub near Narrabri. This isn't going to go away.
  20. Karl Bill McLean (32)

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    http://www.smh.com.au/environment/w...nated-water-near-gas-site-20111208-1oldj.html has a story on water contamination at that site.


    More here, but the source isn't exactly unbiased. http://www.kateausburn.com/2011/12/14/first-known-case-of-csg-contaminating-water-in-nsw/

    Here is the one that talks about dying trees - http://www.abc.net.au/news/2012-01-02/greens-claim-csg-mine-poisoning-trees/3755362 --Looks like the claims of a local resident and probably without merit in this particular case, unless the Department of Primary Industries is part of a coverup and in league with Santos and Santos spokesman Sam Crafter.


    I have no doubt that using all of these chemicals to hydraulically fracture underground rock strata (or even just using water to do the fraccing) is putting underground water supplies at risk. Mining companies have a long history of screwing things up, either through a strong ability to ignore things that don't suit them and justify anything that does, overconfidence in their own abilities to manage the impacts of their operations, negligence (from benign to criminal) or outright malfeasance. Its a pretty rough and ready industry and the blokes in charge at an operational and corporate level aren't exactly philanthropists. Big dollars like those in Mining, massive revenues and huge costs - it's very corrupting of reasoned and measured approaches.

    I did a bit of geology at Uni (couple subjects) and topped Earth Science at School - which I recognize hardly makes me an expert - and based on that limited and out of date knowledge, I would still take a bit of convincing that these mining guys really know what exact impact this fraccing is having down there, how extensive the repercussions are, or how connected and interdependent a lot of these water supporting geologic structures really are. Anyone from their side who says "Don't worry, we have done studies and it's perfectly safe" is lying through their teeth. And saying you meet "government requirements" is an empty platitude when you look at the woefully fragmented and inadequate regulation of this industry at the moment.

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