Ichthys LNG project gets environmental nod

Rick Wilkinson
OGJ Correspondent

MELBOURNE, June 28 -- Australia’s Federal Environment Minister Tony Burke gave government approval for the proposed Ichthys LNG project provided strict conditions are met.

Operator Inpex Australia must develop a greenhouse gas management strategy outlining the measures and offsets the company proposes to reduce GHG emissions before LNG production can begin.

Inpex also must establish measures to minimize waste and noise, including noise generated by setting piling and blasting in Darwin Harbor.

Additionally there will be conditions imposed on dredging and spoil disposal to protect marine life.

Inpex must develop and implement a rigorous management plan with the help of an expert panel. The plan must include measures to prevent, detect, and respond to threats to marine life and enable dredging methods and mitigation measures to be changed or adapted to any new information.

The company is required permanently to protect and manage 2,000 hectares of vegetation at the plant site as well as marine habitat for inshore dolphins, turtles, and sea cows.

The Ichthys project is expected to produce 8.4 million tonnes/year of LNG, 1.6 million tpy of LPG, and 100,000 b/d of condensate. The on stream date is scheduled for 2016.

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