Santos' plans to develop the coal seam gas reserves of north west New South Wales could deliver a $15.2 billion boost to the state's economy and see the creation of 2,900 ongoing full-time jobs.
A report by Allen Consulting Group released today by Santos shows that if the company’s proposed coal seam gas (CSG) investments proceed as scheduled, up to 1800 jobs would be created during a construction period between 2014 and 2017.
The report: The economic impacts of developing coal seam gas operations in Northwest NSW found that the economic benefits from a fully-developed CSG industry in Northwest NSW could include:
- $470 million per year or $8.5 billion to 2035 increase in the Gross Regional Product of Northwest NSW;
- $821 million per year or $15.2 billion to 2035 increase in NSW Gross State Product;
- approximately 2,900 ongoing full-time positions;
- $531 million per year or $10.7 billion to 2035 boost to Australia’s GDP; and
- an extra 5GL per year of water from coal seams, which after treatment by Santos could boost agricultural production in the region by an average of nearly one per cent per annum.
Santos’ Vice President Eastern Australia, James Baulderstone, said: “NSW can have a safe and sustainable coal seam gas industry that co-exists with agriculture and delivers real economic benefits to the wider community.
“This report confirms that there will be multi-billion dollar economic benefits for the state and regional communities if the industry is allowed to reach its full potential.
“Santos is determined that this can be achieved with the minimum environmental impact and in partnership with landholders and local communities.”
The report found local communities in the Northwest region would receive the greatest economic benefits from the industry.
According to the report, over 40% of the benefits accrue directly back to the regional economy including the communities of Boggabri, Coonabarabran, Gunnedah, Muswellbrook, Narrabri, Quirindi, Scone and Singleton.
“Allowing the natural gas industry to develop in NSW will deliver once-in-a-generation economic opportunities for the state, especially in regional areas,” Mr Baulderstone said.