Blockade halts drilling work
MORE THAN 40 anti-CSG activists rallied yesterday at the entrance of Eden Creek State Forest after work started to complete a drilling pad for Metgasco's coal seam gas production.
Metgasco has confirmed the works are being carried out on its behalf at the site adjacent to the Booths Rd entrance to the state forest at Doubtful Creek, 31km from Kyogle.
Activists stopped an unmarked car from entering the site just after 3pm.
"We are just photographers. We don't have anything to do with the gas extraction," the driver of the vehicle said, but still had to leave the site.
A second car with the Metgasco logo was also unable to enter the site an hour later.
People participating in the blockade were mostly talking to each other in a peaceful manner.
A local woman who declined to reveal her name was watching closely.
"I am against CSG but I've heard these activists can get a bit out of control so I am just waiting to see what happens," she said.
Metgasco confirmed yesterday that contractors and their own workers were unable to enter the site yesterday "due to the blockade by protesters".
"The proposed site at Doubtful Creek is one of three locations Metgasco has been granted approval (for) by the NSW Government to drill a core hole well - the others are Glenguie and Banyabba," the company said.
"The work that is currently being done at Doubtful Creek is preparing the site for the arrival of core hole drilling equipment."
Metgasco confirmed that no drilling will be done during this stage.
"The drilling of a core hole involves the removal of a section of rock from formations containing coal about 10cm in diameter and does not involve the collection of natural gas.
"We have approval from the landowner and we have consulted with neighbouring landholders," the company said.
PREPARING THE SITE
- The civil construction associated with the site preparation is very basic and essentially involves:
- The use of gravel at the well pad site, which is an area of about 30m x 30m
- The use of gravel to build a track to the drill site
- Construction of an earth wall to divert rain water away from the site
- Construction of a silt barrier at the low side of the site to ensure that there is no soil runoff associated with any rain event.