Appea slams Aussie report on seismic testing
Australia's peak oil and gas body Appea on June 11 criticised the recommendations made by the environment and communications references committee on the impact of seismic testing on fisheries and the marine environment. The committee report was presented on June 10.
Some of the recommendations include a levy by the Australian government on oil and gas companies that conduct offshore seismic activities to fund research into the impacts of seismic testing on marine animals and the marine environment, collect and share marine animal and marine environment-related data that has been collected before, during and after a seismic survey to improve current understanding of the impacts of seismic testing, create exclusion zones for seismic activities in or around Australian Marine Parks in Commonwealth marine areas and prohibit acreage release and acceptance of environment plans that propose seismic activities in biologically important areas.
Appea said that the committee led by the Greens has ignored good science in an effort to further ostracise the gas industry for political gain. Appea CEO Andrew McConville said the recommendations made by the committee fly in the face of science and reason.
“This report is politically motivated with no sensible basis in fact,” McConville said. “Seismic surveys have been proven to be safe time and time again. Independent research by the CSIRO and Geoscience Australia in the Bass Strait and Gippsland regions are proof of this.”
McConville said Appea also strongly supports the stringent environmental regulations governing seismic surveys and the role of offshore regulator NOPSEMA to ensure compliance.
He said that the industry is already doing far more than recommended, investing millions in research and environmental protection measures to safeguard Australia’s marine areas.
“Australia’s oil and gas industry is committed to preserving our marine environment, supporting marine industries and responsibly managing all offshore operations,” he said. “Seismic surveys are crucial for new oil and gas projects that create thousands of jobs and bring millions of investment dollars to our regions.”