Who determines whether a bore has been affected by CSG activities?
Landholders who are concerned that their bore is experiencing an impact from CSG are encouraged to contact the company which has activities on your property or nearby in the first instance.
If you are not satisfied with the response then landholders need to contact the CSG Compliance Unit Groundwater Investigation Team on (07) 4529 1500 or email email@example.com
The groundwater team are able to do desktop or on ground bore assessments and investigations to determine if CSG is causing the bore issues. If after the investigation the CSG companies activities are deemed to be responsible then the regulator - the Department of Environment and Heritage Protection (DEHP) - will give a direction to the company to develop a Make Good agreement with the landholder and provide a suitable supply or provide compensation.
Landholders that do not have CSG activities on their property are provided the same protection as those that do. All landholders within the Surat Basin Cumulative Management Area (CMA) are covered by the Surat Basin Underground Water Impact Report (UWIR) model predictions and landholders have the same rights on and off tenure inside the CMA.
Who pays for a bore assessment?
Landholders that have been approached to negotiate an agreement for exploration activities and develop a Conduct and Compensation Agreement (CCA) should consider negotiating with the resource company to have a baseline assessment completed on their bores and included in their CCA. For ongoing CSG activities, such as pumping and well testing potentially moving into production, we encourage landholders to consider ongoing monitoring of bores and to include in agreements as well.
When a company moves into production and are granted a production permit or Petroleum Lease (PL) then there is a requirement on the company to carry out baseline assessments on all bores within the tenure area. This is at cost to the company and must be done so with agreements from landholders. Landholders that do not negotiate with the company to do bore testing may have to do so at their own cost.
The CSG Compliance Unit Groundwater Investigation & Assessment Team (GIAT) has a landholder bore monitoring program called CSG Net. It is a bore monitoring program giving landholders the tools and knowledge to equip their bore with pressure monitoring equipment and are able to feed this data back to GIAT groundwater databases.
This information helps the groundwater team in bore complaints and work to improve regional modelling. Landholders who are interested in participating in this program are encouraged to contact the CSG Compliance Unit on (07) 4529 1500 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
Have cases progressed to Land Court because an agreement cannot be reached, and where Land Court has found in favour of the landholder?
Since the Land Access laws were changed in 2010 there have been a number of matters referred to the Land Court. As of yet we have not seen a case go through the Land Court and set down a precedent on these laws. Cases that have been referred have been settled before being heard and a decision set down.
Are there any landholder forums to facilitate the sharing of information and strategies, to assist landholders with their negotiations?
AgForce encourages all landholders to share their experiences and knowledge with each other to allow other people to learn and build on these experiences and in some cases mistakes. By talking with friends, family, neighbours and anyone else with informed knowledge and experience to share it can help to give you a better picture of expectations but also mistakes that others have made or get an idea of some positive and effective conduct provisions that they have negotiated in agreements or potential pitfalls to avoid.
Through the AgForce Projects Landholder CSG Project we have spoken to over 3700 landholders and facilitated workshops to allow landholders to share knowledge, experiences and insight with each other while also hearing technical advice from project officers. CSG landholder workshops cover all aspects of the industry including current and planned activities, groundwater issues and management of CSG water, Make Good framework right through to how to negotiate an agreement including landholder rights and conduction provisions to include.
If you have any further questions or need any help with concerns about coal seam gas please contact the CSG team via email
, or call 3238 6048.