Tuesday, 3 June 2014

In which Greens MLC Jeremy Buckingham informs the NSW Parliament and Metgasco Limited's CEO Peter Henderson writes yet another letter

The political duel continues in ‘The people of the Northern Rivers and political allies versus Coal seam and tight gas exploration company Metgasco Limited and political allies’.

Excerpts from NSW Legislative Council Hansard 15 May 2014:

1838.  Mr Buckingham to move

1.             That this House notes that:

(a)        the Driller Logs and Well Completion Reports from Metgasco detail numerous alarming failures and environmental damage due to routine poor practice and the inherently risky nature of gas drilling operations,

(b)        at Bowerbird E02 well Metgasco drilled into a river bed with high water flows and the well caved in. It was subsequently abandoned,

(c)        at Corella E01 well the casing stuck and explosive cutters were required to remove the casing, the well was then abandoned,

(d)        at Corella E03 the well caved in due to water inflow at 220 metres,

(e)        following the drilling of Corella P11 Metgasco said: “We were not aware of this shale at 3m from the base, nothing was reported by the geologists from their samples, or from the experts”,

(f)        at Corella P13 380m of drilling string and the 33m borehole assembly were abandoned in the well,

(g)        Corella E17 while flaring at 18psi they noticed the annular was leaking and had to abandon the test,

(h)        at Corella P18 a drill pipe became stuck in the hole and they were unable to clear the blockage,

(i)         at Riflebird E03 the hole collapsed from 16m, there were breakdowns, pipes got stuck and a 6m HQ barrel was left in the hole,

(j)         at Riflebird E5 Metgasco said: “This site is a terrible bloody mess. The pits are still a mess” before the well collapsed at 96m,

(k)        at Riflebird E14 Metgasco’s mud log states that “gas detector not functioning but hydrocarbons can be smelled in the shaker area”,

(l)         at Wayan 01 the top bonnet seals leaked oil in the annular,

(m)      at Cedar Point 1 and NCASI-1R methane was found in the mud and there were well integrity issues,

(n)        the Kingfisher Well  has not been cleaned up properly following 19 drill pipes being ejected into the air due to rising well pressure and loss of casing integrity,

(o)        NSW Trade and Investment have said that Metgasco fracked this well despite knowing it lacked integrity,

(p)        at SCASI-1 gas bubbling was observed in the hole and they had water losses, and

(q)        at SCASI 09 the driller had a seizure.

2.         That this House calls on the Government to immediately cancel all Petroleum Exploration and Production activity in New South Wales pending a thorough investigation of these routine and alarming failures during drilling.

(Notice given 15 May 2014—expires Notice Paper No. 218)

1728. Mr Buckingham to move—

1. That this House notes that:

(a) a recent report by the Australia Institute has discredited coal seam gas industry claims that it is a significant employer,

(b) the report states that: “While the gas industry is relentless in its claims about job creation, the simple fact is that it is a relatively small employer”,

(c) despite inflated industry claims that they created 100,000 jobs in 2012, the actual number reported by the Australian Bureau of Statistics is that 9,372 jobs were created in the entire oil and gas industry in that year,

(d) in August 2013, the entire oil and gas industry only employed 0.2 per cent of the Australian workforce, and

(e) this is less than two-thirds of the workforce of hardware retail company Bunnings Warehouse.

2. That this House calls on the Department of Planning to ensure that the economic modelling associated with planning applications is accurate.

(Notice given 18 March 2014—expires Notice Paper No. 207)

Excerpts from coal seam and tight gas exploration company Metgasco Limited’s media release/statement to the Australian Stock Exchange of 29 May 2014:

Metgasco is aware of a number of statements, including some made in the NSW Parliament, that are incorrect and misleading.   Metgasco has written to all Members of the NSW State Parliament refuting these claims and setting out our views relating to the suspension of approval to drill the Rosella E01 exploration well at Bentley…..

Metgasco is aware of a recent letter which seeks to accuse us of unacceptable drilling practices on a number of our wells. The information source for these accusations appears to be well completion reports which can be obtained through the government. We note that these reports are reviewed by government inspectors who have expressed no concern about them. In our opinion, the accusations show that the author has little understanding of the drilling industry or geology. He has misconstrued comments in the well completion reports, taken them out of context and at other times selectively quoted comments. His analysis, which we believe is incorrect and uninformed, could be used in an attempt to damn all oil and gas drilling, the routine drilling required to support coal and mining industries and even the hundreds of thousands of water bores drilled throughout Australia to support agriculture, industry and domestic needs…..  

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