AGL Employee

Hi @bambigirl 


You’re right we have never said there would be absolutely no environmental impact. As acknowledged in the ABC interview, the early expert reports prepared for the Environment Effects Statement (EES) referral found there were potential marine impacts from the open loop regasification process – which uses seawater to warm the very cold LNG.


During the open loop process the ship’s system, like a filtration system in a salt water swimming pool, produces a small amount of chlorine, being approximately 0.1 of a milligram a litre at the release point, from the seawater to keep the system clean.


EES referral expert reports found that when the water returns to Western Port it will break down to an undetectable level within 20 seconds. In other words, the level of chlorine in the water that’s returned to the port would be significantly less than that allowed in our drinking water.


The seawater would also return to Western Port at about seven degrees cooler.


The early expert reports also show that this will quickly mix back to within 0.3 degrees of the environment by the time it reaches the seabed. It will fully mix with the movements of the tide and is in line with daily temperature variations within Western Port.

What we have set out to do here is develop a project which has as little impact on the environment as possible. However, we understand that many in the community don’t consider that this is good enough.


While the early expert reports show the chlorine breaks down very rapidly and the temperature differences quickly dissipate, we also recognised more needed to be done to fully assess what impact this might have on Western Port.


The community also made their concerns known to the government and they have been successful in making sure they are now assessed independently through an Environmental Effects Statement  process which will assess alternatives to avoid and mitigate effects. If the potential impacts cannot be acceptably addressed the project would not go ahead.


In the ABC interview, we also acknowledged that there are few benefits to the local Crib Point community because the town doesn’t get reticulated natural gas and there will only be around 45 full time jobs to run the FSRU.


The comment “the community are taking one for the team” recognises that most of project’s benefits are for the rest of the eastern states of Australia because it will provide a secure supply of gas and more supply will help to reduce gas prices or at least cap them at international prices.


We are being up front with the community about the lack of local benefits and that most of the benefits are for the broader community. This is an uncomfortable truth about many infrastructure projects. We face the very same situation when we build wind farms and solar farms near local communities.

The project is still in the feasibility stage and AGL has yet to make a final decision to fully fund the proposed project.