Coal seam gas a risk: JPMorgan  

Posted by Big Gav in , , , ,

The SMH has an article on a recent JP Morgan report listing challenges ahead for the coal seam gas industry - Coal seam gas a risk: JPMorgan.

One of the world’s leading investment banks has poured cold water on Queensland’s emerging $50 billion coal seam gas industry.

A report by JPMorgan says the industry has significant water risks, an unknown impact from growth and is a potential risk to public safety.

The report, by analyst Garry Sherriff, says costs involved in developing the projects, which involve piping gas from the Surat Basin to export terminals at Gladstone, are likely to blow out because of environmental concerns.

It warns that towns and landowners risk reduced water supplies; there is a risk of reduced water quality; and of gas migrating to existing bores.

Once on the surface, the saline water extracted in the CSG mining process will have to be treated, stored and disposed of, the report says.

JPMorgan also expresses doubts about the cumulative impact from multiple CSG developments.

These water risks could translate into project cost increases, government intervention, changes to regulations and potential disruption to long-term gas supply contracts, the report says.

There is also a danger that a build-up of gas in water bores could result in large, uncontrolled gas releases which may pose a risk to public health and safety, the report says.

JPMorgan’s report backs up community concerns over the industry, says Friends of the Earth campaigner Drew Hutton.

‘‘It is time for the state government to start listening to community voices calling for a moratorium on the industry,’’ Mr Hutton said. ‘‘The report states there are so many environmental risks associated with the operation of coal seam gas that the government will need to change the rules along the way and this could create great uncertainty for the companies and their markets."

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