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'Great potential' for shale gas development in Queensland

14 March, 2014

There remains enormous potential to safely explore and develop Queensland's shale gas resources, to create jobs and attract another wave of economic investment, the Australian Petroleum Production & Exploration Association (APPEA) said yesterday.

Already natural gas from coal seams feeds almost 100 per cent of Queensland's gas supply needs and has been responsible for generating about 30,000 jobs, mostly in rural and regional communities.

Comments made by the Queensland opposition about the future of shale gas development overlook the Queensland gas industry's proven record of safe operations over many decades.

APPEA Chief Operating Officer Paul Fennelly said: "It is very important that political parties do not adopt policies from The Greens to stop resource development and the benefits it can bring to Queensland's economy.

"Across the border in South Australia about 685 wells have been safely fractured stimulated in the Cooper Basin over the last 40 years.

"Shale gas also uses multi-pad horizontal drilling, which ensures that the surface footprint of activities is minimised so that there is little impact on agricultural operations or the environment."

Last year the Australian Council of Learned Academies highlighted the 'great potential' of shale gas as an important new energy option for Australia, while also identifying challenges that could be met through careful management.

Fennelly said: "Industry supports the findings that robust regulation and best practice operations are central to managing and mitigating the identified risks."


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Bob | Friday, March 14, 2014, 10:51 AM
I am not a 'greenie', but yet to be convinced that shale gas drilling is not "safe" for anyone other than the financial investors. Water tables have been recently proven to be poisened and I would suggest that the "proven record of safe operations" is only because the bores have not been monitored for water quality changes. Our Great Artesian Basin is too precious for Eastern Australia to let another 100 cowboy drillers installing poorly lined wells.
Christina | Friday, March 14, 2014, 3:12 PM
I too am yet to be convinced that we need this. There is not enough evidence that the Great Artesian Basin will not be polluted but lots of evidence coming from America that the ground water supplies there have been polluted to the extent that even after reverse-osmosis filtering, people and animals have died as a result of ingesting, inter alia, triethylene glycol (aka anti-freeze). The animals drink it because it is sweet; human beings drink it after being assured that the filtering makes the water completely safe. Wrong! The bottom line is Australia does not need this gas, we have enough other resources to keep us going for a long long time. This is for export. And export at the expense of our farming land, our livestock and ourselves. We have to stop it now.