Environmental approval for massive LNG plant

environmentTHE Queensland Government has given Arrow Energy the green light to proceed with its $15 billion LNG project on Curtis Island, after granting environmental approval.
The Arrow LNG project will process CSG from the Surat and Bowen basins in southeast and central Queensland, respectively.
The project comprises the construction of a gas pipeline to Curtis Island; a liquefaction facility where CSG will be converted to LNG; marine facilities, jetties, offloading facilities, dredging, and an LNG carrier terminal on Curtis Island.
The liquefaction facility will produce up to 18 million tonnes per annum of LNG and includes the staged construction of up to four LNG trains, with two trains of about 4mtpa constructed during stage one.
The Arrow LNG development will be the fourth LNG project on the island. If the Federal Government gives approval, the project would still need financial approval from its owners, Shell and PetroChina.
Queensland Deputy Premier and State Development, Infrastructure and Planning minister Jeff Seeney said the approval was a step towards the massive project’s realisation.
“While Arrow still has some work to do, with financial close and CSG supply components to be finalised, it certainly reinforces Curtis Island and Gladstone as the Pacific LNG hub,” he said.
Mr Seeney said the project would help the state’s economy with a peak workforce of about 3500 construction jobs and 450 operational jobs during stage one, rising to 600 at the end of stage two.
However, conservationists had urged the Federal Government not to make a rash decision during the plant’s approval process.
Capricorn Conservation Council spokesman Michael McCabe told the ABC that the decision needed to be carefully considered.
“This will require an additional layer of dredging approvals and we really shouldn’t add another layer of pressure to the Gladstone Harbour until we’ve got a far better understanding,” he said.
Mr McCabe said it would take about a year before the environmental impact of the three existing plants on Curtis Island was understood.
The state government would also decide whether to approve Arrow’s CSG proposal near Dalby in the Bowen Basin.