'Anything goes': Gladstone environment group warns of gas flaring risks
APPROVING a plea to change environmental conditions for a Curtis Island LNG project would set a precedent that "anything goes" in our region, a Gladstone conservation group has warned.
Gladstone Conservation Council has objected to QGC's application to "remove limitation" on smoky flaring from its Queensland Curtis LNG plant.
The company has applied for a major amendment to its environmental authority to allow smoky flaring for hours, instead of 30 minutes.
Gladstone Conservation Council has published a template for submissions for residents against the bid.
"Changing the Environmental Authority to allow more pollution instead of insisting that QGC fix the problem sends a message that 'anything goes' in Gladstone and that the State Government is not serious about holding these industries to account for their actions," the template reads.
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The group also worries the remaining two LNG plants would follow suit, if the condition change is approved by the Department of Environment and Heritage Protection.
Describing smoky flaring as a "threat" to the community, the conservation council said the application was a move for QGC to "avoid compliance".
"QGC stated in their Environmental Impact Statement before the project began that the flares would be smokeless," it said.
"This is what was approved by the government and the community signed up for."
A Shell QGC spokesman said the company would respond to individual submissions through
DEHP channels once the public consultation period finished.
"QGC seeks regulatory conditions which recognise a 30-minute timeframe is not adequate to remove all traces of gases during a planned maintenance shutdown in October this year," the spokesman said.
"This change will allow excess gas to be burnt off in a safe and controlled way, ensuring safe operations during the shutdown."
QGC will host two information sessions about its application on July 13, from 1-3pm and 5-7pm at the Grand Hotel, Gladstone