Fact Sheets

Coal Seam Gas Fact Sheet

What is coal seam gas mining?

Coal seam gas (CSG) mining is an invasive form of unconventional gas mining.  It usually involves tens of thousands of gas wells, with roads, pipelines, compressor stations, wastewater dams, and other infrastructure.  A CSG project can spread across hundreds of thousands of hectares of land.

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Santos Narrabri/Pilliga Coal Seam Gas Project Fact Sheet

The Pilliga Forest, in northwest NSW, is the largest inland forest in eastern Australia. Home to the Gomeroi (Gamilaraay) people, the forest is an important recharge zone for the Great Artesian Basin; it acts as a massive filtration system for water to recharge one of the largest freshwater resources on earth.

In 2011, fossil fuel giant Santos proposed building 850 unconventional coal seam gas well pads and associated infrastructure across a 95,000 hectare site in the Pilliga Forest, the largest project ever proposed in NSW.

In 2017, the NSW Department of the Environment requested feedback on Santos’ Environmental Impact Statement. More than 23,000 individuals and organisations responded, the most of any project in NSW history; 98% of respondents strongly opposed the project. In spite of this outcry, in 2020 the project proceeded to the Independent Planning Commission. Opposition to the project was so strong the IPC had to schedule an unprecedented seven days of hearings; over 400 people spoke before the Commission, with additional written submissions, which generated the largest array of scientific evidence ever submitted against a fossil fuel project in NSW.

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