Media Releases

STATEMENT: Time for Environment Minister to call in Beetaloo project and enact water trigger

7 June 2024

Alarmingly, the NT government just has approved Tamboran Resources’ plan to undertake exploratory drilling and flow testing at up to 15 wells in the Beetaloo Basin.

These plans present considerable risk to the environment, including potential impacts to ‘matters of national environmental significance’ as defined under the EPBC Act.

Last year the EPBC Act was amended to include a water trigger to protect water supply, quality & biodiversity. In particular, risks to the water resources from contamination, extraction from hydraulic fracturing water requirements, now fall under the amended Act.

Tamboran Resources continues to expand incrementally, increasing the number of wells, over multiple Environment Management Plans. However, its announcements to the ASX indicate bold and significant plans, in the order of 70 wells and an extensive pipeline. The project must be considered in its entirety and with regard to cumulative impacts.

To date Tamboran and the NT Government has failed to refer the project under the EPBC Act.

It is critical that the project is considered as a single controlled action for the purposes of the EPBC Act and the potential impacts it may have on groundwater or endangered species is considered as part of an assessment of the cumulative impacts of other similar operations in the area.

Beetaloo’s First Nations & farming communities don’t want their water poisoned by fracking.

Minister Plibersek, it’s time to call this project in.