Santos has received all the necessary State and Federal approvals, as well as landholder agreements, to commence exploration and appraisal works as part of its exploration drilling program in north-west NSW.
The current exploration activities are restricted to a section of the Pilliga that has been specifically reserved by the NSW Government for logging, mining and gas extraction.
A group of approximately 20 protestors have sought to disrupt and delay scheduled works including the movement of a rig. Police have arrested a number of protestors, following dangerous tactics which included locking-on to vehicles and running beneath moving trucks – putting both themselves and Santos staff at great risk.
The safety of Santos staff, the local community and the protestors is paramount to Santos.
Santos acknowledges and respects the right of individuals to protest peacefully and we are committed to carrying out this approved work in a safe and timely manner.
Santos continues to have considerable community and business support in and around the Narrabri area. It is therefore unfortunate that a few professional protestors are claiming to speak on behalf of the entire community.
Santos has consulted extensively with the Narrabri Shire Council, landholders and the community and will continue to do.
Santos will only undertake exploratory activities where appropriate landholder agreements are in place.
Santos will continue to work with the local community as we seek to develop a project based around the natural gas resources in and around Narrabri, which could deliver up to half of the State’s natural gas needs.