Fracking fluid found in Gloucester groundwater

Local resident Kate Fry at the entrance to the Gloucester Gas Project. Photo supplied

Local resident Kate Fry at the entrance to the Gloucester Gas Project. Photo supplied

The Greens mining spokesperson Jeremy Buckingham today said the community’s worst fears have been realised, with the Environmental Protection Authority announcing they were investigating AGL’s detection of fracking chemicals in ground water after recent hydraulic fracturing operations at Gloucester.

He repeated the Greens call for fracking and coal seam gas to be prohibited in NSW.

‘One of the great fears with coal seam gas is water contamination from fracking chemicals, and now it appears this fear has come true with AGL’s fracking operations at Gloucester,’ said Greens MP Jeremy Buckingham.

‘The industry can no longer pretend that fracking for coal seam gas does not contaminate ground water. First we had Santos contaminate an aquifer with uranium and other heavy metals near Narrabri, and now we have fracking chemicals being detected in groundwater at Gloucester after recent hydraulic fracturing operations.

‘This mirrors contamination incidents in the United States, where in Pennsylvania alone, 243 cases of ground water contamination were directly linked to fracking or drilling for unconventional gas.

‘Premier Mike Baird has said that he “absolutely” wants coal seam gas in NSW, but is he happy to have our water resources contaminated with fracking fluid too?

‘Coal seam gas is set to be a major issue at the upcoming state election as voters make their concern know at the ballot box.

The Greens want a complete ban on coal seam gas.

‘The Greens urge the EPA to investigate this incident with all of their powers and prosecute if a licence breach has occurred. AGL have had multiple breaches of their pollution licences relating to coal seam gas, only to cop a ‘slap on the wrist’ fines of $1,500,’ he said.


8 responses to “Fracking fluid found in Gloucester groundwater”

  1. Liz Gibbs says:

    This is THE MOST IMPORTANT ISSUE faced by NSW (Australia, the world) at the moment. Playing ostrich or pretend politics now will result in the world’s arguably driest country suddenly being faced with nothing to drink (oil is not an option). Lack of action now will result in the destruction of a paradise on earth. Too stupid for words in my humble opinion.

  2. Ian Wickham says:

    Fines are fine, but how do you FIX it???

  3. Joan Jones says:

    If the NSW government has not got enough proof now, then what does it take to get through to these people, contamination has already shown up at Gloucester, and all those cases in America what more proof is there. The Northern Rivers say NO to fracking cannot say it any plainer.

  4. Kamala says:

    Worst fears realized – driest continent on earth – no water to drink – possibly we will be extinct!
    Think politicians think! Fracking – madness, pure madness!

  5. Mia says:

    I was talking to a very wealthy Canadina businessman years ago who I was surprised to find was totally against Gas mining. He summed it up- they have one chance to make a mistake and no chance of fixing it. He then quoted the mistakes that had been made in his country. When he mentioned the leaking of Uranium into groundwater that had happened I thought that sounded unlikely. Of course Santos later proved this an inevitable fact with their leaking of Uranium in the Pilliga area. Why can’t our government think globally and look at the mistakes that have been made overseas? Canada and the U.S are often a step ahead. Hey Pollies look where you are treading. Look straight at the economics even if the environmental issues are of no obvious concern to you. And then consider the long term costs in trying to fix up the mess… even the most “ungreen” person, such as my Canadian aquaintance would laugh at the stupidity of a government who would take on Coal Seam Gas mining.

  6. Kristian says:

    “slap on the wrist’ fines of $1,500,”??

    At least the fines should scale according to the size of the business involved. Fines for AGL in this case should be no less than $500,000. A company that size getting fines of $1500 is like individuals getting a 50cent fine… affordable and will not deter them from making multiple mistakes..

  7. earthlover says:

    Those politicians responsible for the approval of fracking should be held directly and personally responsible for all potential harm or negative impact resulting from their arrogant and misinformed support of this industry when that support has been offered despite overwhelming evidence and consensus urging them to ban this toxic practice. Perhaps that would make them consider that it’s not going to be good enough to say “I didn’t know” when the proverbial hits the fan!

    What on Earth is so difficult to understand? We can’t eat coal. We can’t drink gas. Perhaps Gloucester’s now spoiled fracking-water cocktail could be the politicians’ and gas moguls’ ‘poison’ of choice when toasting their insatiable lust!

  8. Jeff Johnson says:

    It’s obvious to all that fracking is an environmental disaster, yet the National Party feel that it is ok to renew PEL 445 in the Northern Rivers. Why? Over 90 per cent of the wider community are against it, the NSW Farmers Federation is against it, most of the National Party members are against it. Again I ask why?

    There is a Nationals Party election billboard on Tamarind Drive, just North of Ballina, proclaiming that National Party MP Don Page and his replacement candidate are ‘Protectors of the Northern Rivers’ This makes me sick given they have renewed this exploration licence. Make no mistake, if the National Party is re-elected in the Northern Rivers they will claim this is a mandate for CSG exploration and production in our water catchment areas and rural communities. Put them last until they change their position on CSG.

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