State: Woodside LNG Proposal Fails to Meet Marine Standards
by Asia Pulse Pte Ltd
July 10, 2007
Resources giant Woodside's (ASX:WPL) proposed liquefied natural gas plant (LNG) for the Burrup peninsula in Western Australia's north has failed to meet marine standards set by the state's environmental
The Environmental Protection Authority's report says the
predicted coral loss caused by the $A10 billion ($US8.57
billion) Pluto LNG plant would greatly exceed accepted
Deputy EPA chairman Dr Andrea Hinwood said Woodside's
current offset program was inadequate to address the potential
loss of coral.
"The EPA concluded the proposal did not meet the EPA's
objectives for the marine environment in that it was going to
substantially increase the cumulative loss of coral within the
port area and was also going to have an impact on the adjoining
proposed marine park," Dr Hinwood said.
However, the plant could go ahead if Woodside agreed to a
more substantial offset package and a range of other
conditions, the report noted.
A Woodside spokeswoman said the company was satisfied with
the EPA's recommendations but would not say whether it would
agree to watchdog's conditions.
"That's an issue we'll have to work through with the
government and understand their expectations. Generally we're
satisfied," the spokeswoman said.
The report was unlikely to affect the project's timing or
significantly increase the total cost of the plant, she said.
The report has been handed to WA's Environment Minister
David Templeman who will make the final decision on whether the
project can proceed.
Mr Templeman has declined to comment.
The EPA's report is now subject to a two week appeals
period. Woodside said it was still considering whether to make
Last week, federal Environment Minister Malcolm Turnbull
announced 241 square kilometres of the Dampier Archipelago,
which includes the Burrup peninsula, had received National
That included 99 percent of the land where ancient rock art
is known to exist, but not include the sites for the Pluto
Woodside, which has been criticised by green groups over the
plant's impact on the rock art, has already moved carvings from
the Pluto A site to accommodate its development.
(C) 2007 Asia Pulse Pte Ltd.
Pluto LNG Project
Woodside Petroleum Ltd.; Tokyo Gas; Kansai Electric
Burrup, Western Australia Australia