The NSW Independent Planning Commission has approved the multibillion-dollar Narrabri coal seam gas project.
Santos’s $3.6 billion proposal for 850 coal seam gas wells in the Pilliga region in NSW’s north is expected to supply up to half of the state’s gas needs.
In its statement of reasons, the IPC said approval of the project would be phased, and that Santos would need to meet “strict conditions” before it reached to the construction and production phases.
A large number of concerns had been raised about the potential effects of the project on the groundwater supply for nearby farmers.
But the IPC said Santos’ groundwater modelling was fit-for-purpose.
“The commission imposed conditions requiring further information to improve the groundwater impact modelling before the Project proceeds to Phase 2 [construction],” it said.
-more to come