AGL’s response on leaking coal seam gas well raises more questions
MEDIA RELEASE – 1 September 2014
The Greens NSW spokesperson on coal seam gas Jeremy Buckingham today said AGL’s explanation of why a coal seam gas well was leaking gas near homes at Spring Farm in Western Sydney, only raised more questions.
“At 10pm last night, AGL told the Sydney Morning Herald they were unaware of any incident. A few hours later they admitted that a safety valve has opened at 7.30pm leaking gas into the atmosphere. Why did AGL initially deny there was an incident?” asked Greens MP Jeremy Buckingham said.
“AGL have yet to say why the safety valve has opened? What went wrong with the gas well? How much gas leaked into the air? Is this a regular occurrence?
“Residents heard the venting gas from the early afternoon, so was this a controlled or uncontrolled release?
“The Environmental Protection Authority must investigate this incident. AGL have breached their Environmental Pollution Licence multiple times at the South West Sydney operations, particularly in relation to air pollution releases and monitoring failures. They’ve been placed on an ‘Enforcable Undertaking‘, yet the EPA always lets them off with a small fine and a slap on the wrist, rather than prosecution.
“This latest gas leak underlines why residential areas are absolutely the wrong place for a coal seam gas field. In 2011, I witnessed another coal seam gas well spew foam and gas 30 metres into the air during a well cleaning operation, Mr Buckingham said.
“AGL’s plans to frack near homes in Gloucester and expand into other areas of Sydney should be rejected outright and stopped immediately.”
Contact: Max Phillips – 0419 444 916