Gas giants set for talk

THE liquefied natural gas (LNG) train game on Curtis Island will most likely turn into the billion dollar consolidation project by the end of the year, but what does that mean for the projected jobs in Gladstone?

In the last few days, Curtis Island LNG proponents Santos (GLNG), Origin (APLNG), British Gas QGC (QCLNG) and Shell (Arrow LNG), have all indicated that consolidation talks between the gas giants are imminent, where the planned four LNG plants earmarked for Curtis Island may consolidate into two.

The fear is, that if consolidation does take place, it might cut the projected 18,000 employment figure in half, however, after repeated questioning by The Observer, none of the companies have been forthcoming on the impacts of consolidation.

A spokesperson for Origin (APLNG) said while Origin has acknowledged that they are happy to participate in discussions about consolidation.

“It’s simply too early to speculate about any impact this may have.”

QGC said they are focussed on delivering an economic two-train LNG project. “We have consistently said we will consider opportunities to add value provided they do not compromise our ability to deliver QCLNG. Beyond that, we can’t speculate on what the rest of the industry may do.

Santos CEO David Knox said if Santos collaborates, it will be more than two trains on one site, it will be a three or four train site.

“Construction of the GLNG facility at Gladstone will require up to 3000 workers at peak, and will result in 250 jobs during operation,” Mr Knox said.

The BG and Santos federal environmental approvals have been delayed by the election, with a decision expected in October.

At the time of print Shell had failed to respond.

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