CSG - NOT AT ANY COST, recomendations by BSA

Social, legal and health issues related to air and water toxic pollution in Australia.

CSG - NOT AT ANY COST, recomendations by BSA

Postby HVPA_research » Tue Apr 05, 2011 9:30 am

Link to this page: http://forum.huntervalleyprotectionalliance.com/viewtopic.php?f=3&t=307

Queensland Basin Sustainability Alliance (http://www.basinsustainabilityalliance.org/) recently published a document called NOT AT ANY COST - Blueprint for Sustainable CSG Operations. BSA is far from a radical organisation. Their motto is:
BSA is committed to working with government and industry to achieve a coal seam gas industry that has minimal adverse environmental, economic and social impacts and preserves groundwater resources for future generations
BSA Blueprint in fact represents only a very conservative scientific baseline for protection of land, water and communities from uncontrolled growth of the CSG industry. For example:
Social Impacts
CSG companies must commit to minimising adverse social
impacts. Some of the issues of concern include the high
costs of living in mining towns, competition for skilled labour,
stretched government services (e.g. health and local councils)
and increased demand on infrastructure (e.g. Warrego
Highway). Social impacts must be properly assessed (at both
the personal and community level) and any adverse social
impacts must be adequately addressed and/or compensated.
Gas field development in rural residential areas such as
Tara must be managed with care and consideration and the
residents treated with respect. Some areas should be “off limits”
to CSG operations.

Yet even these minimal social requirements have been breached already at Tara (see http://westerndowns.group-action.com/, http://www.sbs.com.au/news/article/1513311/Police-dismantle-Tara-blockade).To evict a dozen or so of civilian protesters from their camp during the last week or so, was a very heavy-handed operation. Queensland Gas used their "private army" of burly security guards as well as all the special resources of the Queensland police on foot, on horseback, in 4-wheel drives and with dogs. Is this the blueprint for all future relations between the coal seam gas methane industry and the local residents? Is this our much glorified democracy in action?

Following quotes highlight several other important points in the BSA document. It should be widely distributed and accepted as a minimum base for any future plans for the CSG/LNG industry.

Main concerns
BSA’s main concerns are as follows:
Over exploitation of water in the Great Artesian 1. Basin (GAB)
and impacts on the sub artesian aquifers – water depletion
and contamination.
2. Land impacts – contamination, loss of productivity, loss of
amenity and reduction in land value.
3. Land access and compensation – unfair rights of entry
and compensation, inadequate make good arrangements
for groundwater impacts and uncertainty about
the extent of future CSG developments.
4. Social impacts – uncertainty, increased costs of living
to sections of the community and increased demand on
community resources such as roads and
health services.

• CSG infrastructure must not be located closer than 500
metres from residences, schools, or intensive livestock
operations without specific landholder agreement.
Allowances should be made to enable landholders to
negotiate greater separation distances where topography
or particular circumstances warrant it.
• Well spacing and infrastructure must not be intensified
without landholder agreement. ....

Compensation should be attractive to landholders. Landholders
must be fully compensated for their time (including
time taken to do the necessary research to be informed),
for any loss in productivity, for any loss of amenity, for any
reduction in land or business value and for any costs of legal
representation. CSG companies must commit to adopting
best management practices in all aspects of exploration
and production activities as and when they become available
or understood. The following points must also be taken
into account:
Compensation should be for a term

• and be subject to review to allow for unforeseen impacts that may arise;

• Compensation must make allowance to reflect the compulsory nature of the imposition ( i.e. allow a premium to reflect the compulsory nature of the acquisition and the social dislocation and upheaval it causes) ;

• Compensation must account for interference; CSG companies must compensate for their infrastructure’s impact on preventing landholders adopting innovation (new and more efficient agricultural practices).

Well Stimulation such as hydraulic fracturing (fraccing)
All chemicals used in CSG operations must be safe, must be
registered and must be disclosed to landholders and State
Government. The unknown effect of well stimulation on the
interconnectivity between coal seams and other aquifers is a
major concern. More research in each particular gasfield must
be undertaken before fraccing or other techniques are used to
stimulate gas flows.
• CSG companies must provide detailed information on
proposed well stimulation including the chemicals to be
used, quantities injected, and the fate of these chemicals
throughout the stimulation process. Landholders require
this information to meet their Quality Assurance obligations.
• Companies must inform landholders at least 10 days
prior to any scheduled well stimulation activity and must
provide a full report on completion.
• The results of any ground water quality monitoring
program must be promptly provided to landholders. Any
water contamination must be immediately advised to
landholders and emergency water supplies implemented
immediately if necessary.
• Ten percent of all CSG gas wells must be fully and
independently audited each year, by suitably trained
personnel, to ensure compliance with all obligations.
Results of these audits must be publicly available.

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