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MEDIA RELEASE: Santos attempt to greenwash the Barossa project, says environment group

Media release: Santos attempt to greenwash the Barossa project, says environment group

The Environment Centre NT has come out and accused Santos of greenwashing their Barossa gas project plans and has called for the Northern Territory Environment Protection Authority (NTEPA) to call in the project as a whole for a full environmental impact assessment.

Documents submitted to the NTEPA reveal that two thirds of the CO2 from the offshore gas field will be vented directly into the atmosphere before the gas is piped into Darwin LNG. The Barossa gas field, from which Santos is planning to extract gas by 2025, has a reservoir CO2 content of 18% -- double that of any other Australian gas project.

Despite the unprecedented levels of emissions, the proposal contains multiple mentions of how the project will contribute to achieving Santos’ net zero emissions targets, leading to environmentalists labelling the proposal as greenwashing. Santos is currently being sued by ACCR over its claims that it provides clean energy natural gas and has a plan for net zero emissions by 2040.

The announcement progresses Santos’ controversial plans to develop the Barossa gas field, despite opposition from local groups and Tiwi Traditional Owners.  

The proposed pipeline extension would run for 100km in Northern Territory waters and requires approval from the NTEPA to proceed. The original environmental approval for Darwin LNG was given by the NTEPA in 2002 under the now defunct Environmental Assessment Act (1982). The Environment Centre NT is calling on the entire Barossa project, not just the pipeline, to be referred for assessment under the Environment Protection Act (2019).

Jason Fowler of the Environment Centre NT says:

“Santos are trying to develop the dirtiest gas field in Australia; they are literally scraping the bottom of the barrel. As the International Energy Agency has shown, to avoid climate catastrophe we can have no new gas projects—starting today.”

“Santos have no plans to capture the enormous emissions from this atrocious project, just vague promises that are not legally enforceable. This is greenwashing of the highest order”

“The NTEPA must do a full Environmental Impact Assessment of both the pipeline and Darwin LNG plant as the original license was given twenty years ago and today’s project is fundamentally different”

“The Barossa pipeline is another devastating blow for fishers on Darwin harbour, it cuts right through the Charles Point reef fish protection zone and involves months of dredging and heavy shipping traffic”



For further comment, contact Jason Fowler 0487 806 385

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