OBVIOUSLY the advertising agency for Santos this week have their brief mixed up. Attaching the cotton field photograph (The Land 18 October 2012 p 27) with the question “Can agriculture and CSG exist side by side?”
If the correct photograph had been used it would have shown cleared areas each the size of football fields (about 1.7 acres), CSG wells, outlets venting methane, holding ponds, pipes, roads and site access tracks. Some areas would include compressor stations, chemicals, fuel and waste storage facilities, pallets of chemical, storage containers, gas tanks, 44 gallon drums, a site office, living quarters, many light vehicles, support truck, fuel truck, water truck, telehandler, rod sloop, portaloo, light tower, mud tank, mump, various drilling equipment, generator, tool container, accumulator, reverse osmosis machinery and water storages.
Then the correct answer would have read “No, agriculture and CSG can’t co-exist and don’t co-exist.”
If co-existence was possible and in a cotton field in NSW the advertisers would have been able to use the correct photograph with a range of mine site features. Then there would have been no “mix up” (misleading the public).
The Petroleum (Onshore) Act 1991 Section 71 (1) states: The holder of a production lease must not carry out any mining operations or erect any works on the surface of any land which is under CULTIVATION except with the consent of the landholder”.
Perhaps the landholder picking cotton did not consent to access? Hence why there is no evidence of a coal seam gas mine site in the photographed cotton field.
No written consent – no access – no CSG production.
Landholders in NSW need to be aware that they do have the right to deny access and CSG exploration does not have to exist “side by side”.
The Petroleum (Onshore) Act 1991 section 72 (1) also states: “The holder of a petroleum title must not carry on any prospecting or mining operations or erect any works on the surface of any land: (c) on which is situated any improvement (being a substantial building, dam, reservoir, contour bank, graded bank, levee, water disposal area, soil conservation work, or other valuable work or structure) other than an improvement constructed or used for mining or prospecting operations, except with the written consent of the owner” etal.
What farmer does not carry out substantial and valuable soil conservation works on their land?
No written consent – no access – no CSG exploration.