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Sustainability Performance Report 2012 89
The volume of water produced at each of AGL’s coal seam gas
projects is monitored. The greatest volume is being produced at
the Galilee Project which, despite only being in exploration stage,
is located within a geological basin that is characterised by higher
formation permeabilities and groundwater yields. The number of
wells flow-tested at the Galilee Project area in FY2012 was five,
compared to the Camden Gas Project which had 138 wells installed
as at end FY2012, of which 88 were operational and producing gas.
The total volume of water produced during FY2012 at all coal seam
gas project sites was around 220 ML. In addition, during FY2012,
around 100 ML of water was produced at AGL’s conventional oil and
gas projects. In FY2012, produced water was either stored on-site in
lined, aboveground holding ponds, or transported off-site approved
for recycling and reuse, or disposal.
AGL’s Produced Water Management Strategy, which was developed
during FY2011, identifies potential reuse options for the Camden,
Hunter, Gloucester and Galilee Gas Projects. During FY2012, AGL
contracted an environmental consulting group to investigate water
treatment technologies for the potential beneficial use of the Galilee
Gas Project produced water. We will continue with the program of
work to execute the beneficial reuse of produced water across these
sites during FY2013.
During FY2012, approximately 6 ML of water produced from coal
seam gas activities was taken to liquid waste recyclers and treated
for reuse industrial processes. No irrigation using produced water
occurred in FY2012 as the irrigation approval at Gloucester lapsed
and the new approval was only granted at the end of FY2012.
However, AGL plans to expand the irrigation area at Gloucester
and commence an irrigation trial following the receipt of the new
approvals from the NSW Department of Trade and Investment,
Regional Infrastructure and Services, the Office of Environment
and Heritage, and endorsement from the Department of
Primary Industries.
Groundwater monitoring networks were initially established in the
Hunter Gas Project during FY2009, followed and Galilee (FY2009)
and by Gloucester (FY2010). During FY2012, the monitoring
networks were expanded at the Gloucester and Camden North
project areas, and within the vicinity of the proposed Newcastle
Gas Storage Facility, with the installation of 18 new dedicated
groundwater monitoring bores and two new surface monitoring
locations. Seventy dedicated groundwater monitoring bores,
five perched water monitoring bores, and 16 surface monitoring
locations are now operational across these five projects (Hunter,
Gloucester, Galilee, Camden North and the Newcastle Gas Storage
Facility). Additional monitoring locations are planned for these
projects and also at Camden in coming years.
Results to date from AGL’s dewatering programs at the Hunter,
Galilee and Camden gas projects suggest that groundwater in deep
coal seams in these project areas is relatively isolated from water
resources in shallow aquifers and streams, and negligible water
level declines and water quality impacts have occurred due to
AGL’s exploration or production activities.
Coal seam gas produced water
Galilee Gas Project
Hunter Gas Project
Gloucester Gas Project
Camden Gas Project
0 kL
0 kL
Volume produced water FY12
1 Produced water comprises natural groundwater generated from coal seams during flow testing and production dewatering. It does not include other water streams
(drill water, fracture stimulation/flowback water and brine water) that usually require separate water management.
2 Monitoring data for water production levels is provided for Gloucester, Hunter and Galillee gas projects. Produced water data for Camden Gas Project is calculated
from recorded volumes removed from the well sites.
3 No water was produced at the Gloucester and Hunter Gas exploration projects in FY2012 as no pilot testing of production was undertaken. Testing will resume in FY2013.