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Summary

Santos has commenced the first formal step in the assessment process for the Narrabri Gas Project by submitting its Preliminary Environmental Assessment (PEA) to the NSW Government. Santos reported the spill to the Office of Coal Seam Gas (OCSG) and an incident report is being prepared for submission to the OCSG. The water was contained within a surface diversion drain onsite and was captured and returned to the holding pond. There was no impact to any nearby water source and no risk to the environment. The cause of the release occurred whilst transferring produced water from a test coal seam gas well to a holding pond. Staff from the OCSG visited the site within 24 hours of the incident, with EPA staff visiting Santos' operations today.

As part of this process, Santos has identified any potential environmental issues associated with the Project’s
construction and operation, regardless of how unlikely they are to occur.

The PEA outlines strategies to address any potential issues of concern, including:

  • Avoiding work in areas of cultural heritage or ecological significance
  • Locating the majority of our water treatment facilities outside the Pilliga
  • Environmental initiatives to preserve and improve local ecology
  • Monitoring and managing any water impacts.

These issues will then be addressed in a detailed Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) which will be on
public exhibition later this year, providing the community the opportunity to provide feedback on Project plans.

“This comprehensive and thorough environmental assessment process will provide a solid foundation against
which to measure our performance over the coming years,” Santos NSW General Manager, Peter Mitchley said.

As outlined in the PEA, Santos is confident that any environmental impacts will be minimal and can be
managed to ensure the community and environment are safe.

The Narrabri Gas Project will deliver much-needed investment and employment opportunities including 1,200
jobs during Project construction, up to 200 ongoing positions, and a $160 million fund to benefit the local
community.

The Project may also generate $1.6 billion in royalties to fund the provision of essential Government services
and infrastructure.

“Santos understands that benefits generated by the Project need to be delivered to the community while
minimising any potential impacts,” Mr Mitchley said.

“We look forward to continue working with the community to ensure a better understanding of the Project and
how Santos will mitigate any environmental impacts identified.”

Santos’ PEA is available online here

Further information regarding the Narrabri Gas Project is available here