Santos will not repeat its mistakes in QLD, it says

AFTER being charged with contaminating water courses in northern New South Wales, energy multinational Santos wants to convince Queenslanders the same thing will not be repeated at its coal seam gas wells in the state's west.

Santos copped a $1500 fine from the NSW Environment Protection Authority after water near its Narrabri Gas Field was found to be contaminated

The company found it contained high levels of various heavy metals including lead, aluminium, arsenic and uranium levels up to 20 times above national drinking water guidelines.

EPA chief environmental regulator Mark Gifford learned of the contamination after Santos contacted the department to relay its findings.

The facility at the centre of the contamination was built by the Eastern Star Gas, the site's previous owner.

Since taking over in 2011, Santos shut down the site and has since been rehabilitating and re-developing parts of the project.

A Santos spokesman put the blame for the environmental breach at the feet of Eastern Star, saying this would not be an issue at any site developed by the company directly.

The groundwater affected was not used for agriculture or human consumption.

In Queensland, Santos already has more than 100 wells spanning 4000 hectares.

It is one of the forces behind the $20 billion Gladstone LNG Project on Curtis Island in Central Queensland, supported by fellow gas goliaths PETRONAS, Total and KOGAS.

Unlike Queensland, NSW has heavily restricted CSG exploration as a result of huge community opposition.


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