Water protection looking at impacts

MANAGEMENT: Queensland Mines Minister Andrew Cripps.
MANAGEMENT: Queensland Mines Minister Andrew Cripps. Jim Campbell

A REPORT into coal seam gas impacts found industry was working well to manage any impacts on groundwater resources from development in the Surat Basin, according to Queensland Mines Minister Andrew Cripps.

He said the 2013 Surat Underground Water Impact Report was prepared by the Office of Groundwater Impact Assessment and it was progressing a wide range of research projects in the Surat Basin to better understand groundwater aquifer connectivity and refine the model of likely CSG impacts, when the report is updated in December 2015.

"This annual report checks on the progress of how recommendations from the report, approved in December 2012, are being managed, as well as the research activities," he said.

"Greater understanding of groundwater connectivity through research and monitoring will help us better predict and manage groundwater impacts from petroleum and gas activities in the Surat Basin."

The 2013 Surat Underground Water Impact Report findings include:

  •  CSG development in the Surat Basin is not starting as early as was planned at the time the 2012 UWIR was prepared;
  •  As a result, in the short-term (by 2015), impacts will be smaller for the most part than previously predicted. In a few cases the impacts are expected to occur a little earlier;
  •  It is too early in the development of the industry to detect any clear water pressure impacts in aquifers adjacent to coal formations resulting from CSG development;
  •  If a bore has been found to be sourcing water from an aquifer that is shallower than the Walloon Coal Measures, the bore will not be affected until a later time, and may not be affected at all.

Topics:  andrew cripps coal seam gas environment mining