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Surat BasinNEWS THURSDAY 25 JULY 2013

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inside Construction starts on Woleebee Creek to Glebe Weir Page 3 Santos and QGC make a connection Page 5 Meredith makes marathon her mission Page 28 MPC Site Engineer Colin Murphy (left) and SunWater Chief Quality Inspector Butch Lawrence.

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SBNEWS The Team David Richardson General Manager Laurell Ison Media Sales Manager Beth Walker Graphic Design Jillian Poulsen Editor The Surat Basin News will publish every month and will be delivered via the three dominant newspapers of the region: the Chinchilla News,Western Star and Dalby Herald. It will reach the homes and offices of almost 20,000 living, working and playing in the Surat Basin, connecting the business and mining communities throughout the booming region. Plans are to make the newspaper more frequent as the development increases. Surat Basin News is not a necessity. It was born out of a passion for Australia's fastest growing communities — a passion for a region of unbridled potential and a future of vast economic growth and opportunities.The newspaper, professionally designed and regionally topical, will be a must read for anyone associated with the exciting Surat Basin. Surat Basin News will allow local businesses to network and communicate with everyone in the 300 sq km basin, providing unprecedented access to new clients and markets. It will give a revealing insight into major industry while lifting the veil on current and proposed developments. It will be there for each and every announcement shaping the region's future while profiling the colourful characters that define our communities. With the Surat Basin region receiving national attention, Surat Basin News has gone online to ensure our readers in every corner of the country has the latest news sent directly to them. View our previous editions on www.issuu.com/suratbasinnews Regular updates on

www.suratbasin.com.au

inside this edition in theNews

pages 4-8

CSG water will soon be ready to drink. Details page 4. andSuper QGC make historical agreement - Page 5. "TheSantos RSPT (Resource Profits Tax) has created significant uncertainty for the future of mining investment Probe continues into death of Saxon Energy worker. Full story into Australia and would impair the value of previously approved projects and exploration to the point that Pageinvestment 8. continued can no longer be justified,"

down tobusiness

pages 14-19 Wind woes have residents blowing up. Story Page 14. GasField Comission has powers recognised. Deatails Page 15. Panel lifts the lid on social impacts. Story Page 18.

Xstrata Plc chief executive Mick Davis said after Xstrata announced earlier this month suspending $586 million of expenditure.

building theBasin

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pages 18-23 pages 24-28 2013 Suart Basin Mining and Energy Expo a huge success. Details Page 20. Clein Excavations & Tipper Hire continues to grow. Story Page 22.

advertisers index AA & ES ............................................................25 Ace Camp Solutions ......................................18 Annejeda Pty Ltd ............................................28 Brandon & Associates ......................................5 Budden Contractors ......................................20 Caza Catering ....................................................5 Chinchilla Fluid Power....................................16 Chinchilla Heavy Haulage ..............................21 Chinchilla Real Estate ....................................11 Clein Excavations & Tipper Hire..................22 CMS Hire ............................................................8 CMS Towing ......................................................20 CMT Haulage ..................................................28 Dalby Radiators ..............................................15 Diverse Industries ..........................................28

This month’s Face to Face. Page 24. Out and about at the Expo - Page 25. Meredith ready to make her mark. Story Page 28.

Easternwell ..........................................................3 Haymans Electrical ..........................................17 IOR Petroleum ................................................12 KJ Signs ..............................................................13 Loughlin Crane Hire ......................................23 M & P Services (Qld) Pty Ltd ........................1 MI Helicopters ................................................15 Maguire Coaches and Travel ........................11 Mounts Machinery ............................................6 Muddy Waters ..................................................7 Northwest Civil Construction Group ......16 Onsite Rental Group ........................................9 Osmac ................................................................25 Ostwald Bros....................................................19 Patriot Tankers ................................................13

Pirtek..................................................................11 PS & R ................................................................20 Ray White Rural Chinchilla ..........................16 Recruitment 24/7 ............................................18 Robin Newsham ..............................................12 SMK Consultants ............................................17 SQIT......................................................................7 Stonestreets Coaches ....................................15 Tilly's Crawler Parts..........................................2 Trades and Services ..............................26 & 27 TSBE ..........................................................6 & 22 United Camp Hire ............................................5 Uretek ................................................................19


this WEEK PETER BOETTCHER SunWater chief executive

“The project will be supplied to existing and new customers located within the Dawson Valley Water Supply Scheme, who have shown interest in the water supply.�

Construction begins onstruction has commenced on a Central Queensland pipeline project that will see thousands of megalitres of treated CSG water used in the Dawson Valley Supply Scheme. Deputy Premier and Minister for State Development, Infrastructure and Planning Jeff Seeney said SunWater was working with QGC to deliver a 120km pipeline to transport treated CSG water from its water treatment plant at Woleebee Creek to the Glebe Weir.

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It would be the second of its type in the region, the first being the Kenya to Chinchilla weir Pipeline Project. "The Woleebee Creek to Glebe Weir Pipeline project is just the second of its kind in Queensland and will deliver a practical solution to transport the treated CSG water to an existing water supply scheme," Mr Seeney said. "The water will be treated to a high standard using the reverse osmosis process at QGC's state-of-the-art treatment plant under construction near Wandoan and will be monitored

by QGC and SunWater to ensure it meets strict approval requirements. "At its peak, this project will see up to 36,500ML of treated CSG water supply delivered annually to irrigation and industrial customers. "SunWater has received significant interest for the water from agricultural and industrial customers located along the pipeline route, in addition to irrigation customers on the Dawson River, downstream of the Glebe Weir." Mr Seeney said construction of the project commenced earlier

this year near the town of Wandoan and SunWater expected there would be minimal impact on the local community. "SunWater is very experienced in delivering water pipelines and has been working closely with QGC and contractor Murphy Pipe and Civil in preparing the construction site, finalising design, working with landholders and securing appropriate approvals for the project," he said. SunWater chief executive Peter Boettcher said SunWater was committed to seeking water

supply solutions for its customers and that it was particularly pleased to be delivering the Woleebee Creek to Glebe Weir Pipeline project as a beneficial use solution for treated CSG water. "The project will be supplied to existing and new customers located within the Dawson Valley Water Supply Scheme, who have shown interest in the water supply," Mr Boettcher said. SunWater expected pipeline construction would be completed in 2014 and water would flow in late 2014.


in the page 5 page 6 page 7 Santos and QGC connect

World first

Dalby residents ready to fight

Probe continues into death

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hinchilla residents could be drinking treated coal seam gas water as early as October, Queensland Gas Company has revealed. QGC's Chinchilla Beneficial Use Scheme, under which water extracted from the gas fields will be pumped into the Condamine River, is approaching completion. A spokesperson for QGC said the Kenya Water Treatment Plant, located roughly 40km south of town, is scheduled to start supplying water to households some time in "the third quarter of 2013". Excess water collected as a by-product of CSG harvesting will undergo a cutting-edge purification process before being transported into the Chinchilla Weir via an underground pipeline. The pipeline has been built by government water infrastructure developer Sunwater. Sunwater said in a statement that final approvals were all that remained before the treated water could be discharged into the catchment. "No problems have been identified with the water quality, following a consistent process of monitoring," the statement said. "Sunwater is preparing a Recycled Water Management Plan for the release of the treated water to ensure that safeguards are in place for drinking water supplies." Water taken by the Western Downs Regional Council would be further treated before being used in households. Three customers of Sunwater, including Chinchilla crop farmer Ian Wolski, have been using CSG water from the pipeline for agricultural purposes since December last year. Mr Wolski described the process of having the pipeline installed through his property and the repeated rescheduling of the project's projected completion date as "teething problems". "I guess good things come to those who wait," Mr Wolski said. "It's going to be a great scheme once it's up and running. "Everyone has teething problems, we just wouldn't have expected them to last this long." He said he and other Sunwater clients were initially assured that the project would be up and running by February 2012. "It's a bit disappointing in that we've had to wear the interest costs of having (irrigation) infrastructure that wasn't required," he said.

SUNWATER STATEMENT

“No problems have been identified with the water quality, following a consistent process of monitoring.�

L AN D HO L D E R S WI N M A R AT H ON L A N D C O U RT B ATTLE AFTER courtroom scenes reminiscent of the classic Aussie battler tale,The Castle, three central Queensland landowners are celebrating a bittersweet win against mining giant Glencore Xstrata. Xstrata Coal Queensland and its Japanese joint venture partners have been ordered to pay around $12 million in compensation to the landholders within 30 days of the State Government granting mining leases over the $7 billion Wandoan thermal coal project. The Wandoan greenfield project has been the target of constant

speculation over its future after Glencore Xstrata pulled the plug on its $1billion Balaclava Island coal export terminal near Gladstone last month. Landholders Services director George Houen represented the families and said it was a significant decision after the three stood firm while more than 35 other property owners sold privately to Xstrata. "We are really pleased in terms of what courts normally award and it's a notable decision because it is a fair one to the landholders," Mr Houen said.

"The project was always going to require Xstrata to own all of the land and it chose to go about acquiring it in a way which brought about this situation. "I guess they might now be reflecting on the stance they took because it was perfectly obvious they were not making a fair offer to the landholders they were trying to dispossess. "But I don't think anybody thinks this mine is going ahead in the current (market) circumstances, so there's a period of real uncertainty ahead for the owners because it could be years before

it goes ahead and that compensation becomes effective." Land Court president Carmel MacDonald ignored submissions for a sunset clause and indexation to be imposed to the payouts if there were lengthy delays in granting the mining leases. "There is no provision in the Act for the court to order that an award of compensation be indexed," Ms MacDonald said. "If there is a long delay between the handing down of this decision and the grant of the mining leases, such that the rate of the award is eroded by

inflation‌ the respondents may apply for a review of compensation on the grounds there has been a material change of circumstances. "The Act requires the Land Court to determine compensation, not to decide when compensation might cease to be payable." The compensation was determined on recent rural land sales in the area, and the court was told resource companies often paid well above book value to acquire properties of interest.


NEWS page 8

Fairview nearly finished

Making a connection wo of the CSG industry's biggest players have struck a deal that would see both projects maximise productivity. Santos GLNG and QGC signed an agreement this month that supported plant operation flexibility and efficiency for the life of both LNG projects. The agreement links both projects' major pipelines in two places - one on the western side of The Narrows Crossing near Mt Larcom in central Queensland, and one on Curtis Island. Santos GLNG Downstream vice-president Rod Duke said the construction of the two interconnections would help both QGC and Santos GLNG to run their LNG plants as efficiently as possible. "The interconnect points will enable gas to flow from one project to the other when necessary, for example to allow for LNG plant downtime and planned maintenance to occur without interrupting either project's gas field operations," Mr Duke said. "Having two interconnects provides additional flexibility over the lifetime of both projects. It gives more options to the plant operators for moving gas. "Ultimately it means the two companies will be able to buy, sell and swap gas at these points during scheduled and unscheduled events, therefore maximising plant productivity." Mr Duke said this was the first significant bilateral agreement between the two projects. "The QGC and Santos GLNG agreement sets both projects up for the next 20 to 30 years and demonstrates our commitment to further enhancing co-operation between the two projects," Mr Duke said. "We expect that this will be just one of many mutually beneficial arrangements across the industry in the future." Construction of the two interconnect points on adjoining easements is expected to be completed in 2014.

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ROD DUKE Santos Vice President GLNG Downstream

Ultimately it means the two companies will be a b l e t o b u y, s e l l a n d s w a p g a s a t t h e s e p o i n t s during scheduled and unscheduled events, therefore maximising plant productivity

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in the NEWS Connelly St residents prepare to dig in against plans to build ‘motel style’ accommodation in their street

Residents vow to fight development group of Dalby residents will fight an out-of-town developer’s plans to build workers’ accommodation in their quiet residential street. Rockhampton developer Korte Investments has sought a 'material change of use' for two existing residential premises on side-by-side blocks at 10-12 Connelly St. The development would include 20 one-bedroom units as well as a two bedroom self-contained caretaker's unit. The one-bedroom units have been described as “motel style” on the development application. A short street, Connelly links

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Nicholson and Pratten Sts, with the exit opening onto the back of Thomas Jack Park. Residents said the units would turn a residential street into a busy, beeping workers camp with constant traffic. Resident Nicky Hopkinson

spoke to the developer when she first heard the proposal could be going up. "All he could say was he thought it would benefit the street," Ms Hopkinson said. The proposal also includes 30 parking spaces, which residents

were worried would cause congestion in the street, particularly at the single lane Pratten St end. Connelly St resident and ambulance officer Tim Quaife said he was waiting to see an accident happen on the Pratten

St/Connellt St intersection. He said frequent buses collecting and dropping off shift workers, as well as an increase in workers' cars parked in Thomas Jack parking bays on Pratten St, meant traffic in the area had spiked significantly. "They are testing the water with this development," Mr Quaife said. "If this gets approved it will set a precedent."

Residents said the units would turn a residential street into a b u s y, b e e p i n g workers camp with constant t r a ff i c

NICKY HOPKINSON Resident

“All he could say was he thought it would benefit the street.”

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in the NEWS

Surf’s up for activists ara's dedicated antiCSG activists were kept busy during protest efforts that lasted a week. Anti-CSG action gave way to a more relaxed tone for last Saturday's concert. Protester numbers grew from five to 200 between Wednesday and Sunday as the activists arrived at the Wieambilla property on Old Tara Rd by bus,

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car or camper van. Dozens of artists, including blues musician Ash Grunwald and the Winsome Gospel Choir performed songs about capitalist greed, environmentalism and the bubbles in the Condamine River, while Aussie stand-up comedian Steady Eddy cracked jokes for the crowd. Between performances, Greens Senator Larissa Waters, MP Jeremy Buckingham, Lock the

“One way they'll get rid of it is sell it to farmers, because they no longer have access to their water tables, or put it in the We i r a n d l e t p e o p l e d r i n k i t . ”

DREW HUTTON Lock the Gate Alliance president

“They need to face up to it and go around it, or admit they made a mistake and buy out the land at a genuine price that lets them relocate without downgrading their lifestyle.” COLOURFUL CHARACTERS: Knitting Nanas Angela Dalu and Jenny Chester with comedy great Steddy Eddy at the Tara protest concert on Saturday.

Dayne Pratsky, Larissa Waters, Narelle and Scott Collins and Drew Hutton rally together at the protest concert in Tara on Saturday.

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Gate Alliance president Drew Hutton and farmers spoke in opposition to CSG, which they described as a dangerous industry. "Here in Tara they have built a gas field over the top of a residential estate," Drew Hutton said. "They need to face up to it and go around it, or admit they made a mistake and buy out the land at a genuine price that lets them relocate without downgrading their lifestyle." Gordon Fraser from the recently federally registered Stop CSG Party was also present, and commended the actions of Tara's anti-CSG activists when they draped a protest banner over a reverseosmosis plant. "The words 'produced water' are industry spin; it's the fluid

that comes out of the fracking fuel," he said. “One way they'll get rid of it is sell it to farmers, because they no longer have access to their water tables, or put it in the Weir and let people drink it." Organiser Dayne Pratzky said the solidarity from NSW activists was encouraging, and promised "more hardcore" protests before the year was out. Blues musician and environmental activist Ash Grunwald ended the celebrations by donning a wetsuit and a gas mask to surf the bubbling Condamine River to draw attention to the cause. According to organisers the majority of the reinforcing protesters were veterans from the May 2012 Lismore protests, which drew 7000 people and is seen as instrumental in preventing the progress of CSG operations in the region.

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in the NEWS

Probe A continues into death

fatal accident of a Saxon Energy worker is still being investigated, according to the Department of Natural Resources and Mines. "This fatality is subject to an ongoing investigation by Queensland Government Petroleum and Gas Inspectors, who will prepare a report for the State Coroner to consider," a department spokesperson said. So far Queensland Police, the Department of Natural Resources and Mines and Saxon Energy have all refused to identify the 21year-old victim. The Saxon Energy employee was crushed to death at Rig 185 at the Fairview Santos

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GLNG operation site in an onsite accident on Sunday June 22. A source, who wished to remain anonymous said the incident was avoidable. "(The) issue was a known danger that nearly killed someone else," the source said. "We have unqualified, underexperienced men on all our rigs... anyone that comments gets fired." But Saxon Energy's safety manager for Queensland Al Barrett said all of their staff had the proper qualifications and were supervised at all times in compliance with regulations. "At the time of the incident our senior site supervisor was on duty to oversee all work conducted," Mr Barrett said. "Following the incident we

immediately enacted an emergency response and stopped all activities.� Mr Barrett said the immediate priority was to look after the family of the man and the company’s staff. "We've also launched our own internal investigation but we expect that will take some time," he said. Mr Barrett said Saxon Energy would continue to cooperate with police and other authorities as the matter is investigated further. Santos Queensland vicepresident Trevor Brown also sent his condolences to the man's loved ones. "Our thoughts and sympathies are with the man's family and colleagues," Mr Brown said.

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in the NEWS Fairview water treatment facility almost finished

No water wasted antos GLNG has almost finished constructing a four hectare water treatment facility in Fairview field, north of Roma. Santos Queensland vice-president Trevor Brown said the facility would take water extracted from nearby gas wells and process it so it could be used to irrigate crops. "This water treatment facility in the north of Fairview field is going through its final construction testing phase before it is handed over for commissioning," Mr Brown said. "Water pumped from coal seams will be stored in a 35 mega litre water pond before being processed through a treatment facility that will adjust alkalinity and add calcium to meet environmental requirements." Mr Brown said treated water would grow a fodder crop called leucaena which could be used to feed cattle. "Using water to irrigate cattle fodder is one of several sustainable water management strategies that our water experts have developed to minimise our impact," Mr Brown said. At the nearby gas hub, one of two sites in Fairview field, equipment was being installed that would be used to compress gas from wells so it could be sent along the 420 kilometre pipeline to Gladstone. Two 40 tonne tri-ethylene glycol units, each about the size of a double-decker bus, and two 60 tonne gas turbines have been set on their foundations and are ready to be installed. Facilities to compress gas, including two hub compressors and five nodal compressor units, were expected to arrive in the coming months. "We have around 600 workers at our smaller

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Editorial details Jim Campbell 4662 7368 email: editorial@suratbasin.com.au

Surat Basin NEWS Advertising details Laurell Ison 4662 7368 email: advertise@suratbasin.com.au

hub in Fairview field, which is about the size of 40 football fields," Mr Brown said. "As we continue to focus our attention on completing

construction of these hubs and water treatment facilities, we expect another 200 employees to join us at this Fairview site later this year."

TREVOR BROWN vice-president

“This water treatment facility in the north of Fairview field is going through its final construction testing phase before it is handed over for commissioning.”

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opinions

SBNEWS

12 Mayne Street Chinchilla, QLD 4413 PO Box 138, Chinchilla, 4413 Phone: 4662 7368 General Manager: David Richardson Advertising: Laurell Ison Editorial: Jill Poulsen Design: Beth Walker

Editorial THE latest u-turn from Kevin Rudd on carbon prices is doing nothing to create certainty in the electricity supply industry. Mr Rudd has abandoned the carbon tax and instead will bring forward an emission trading scheme to start in 2014, linked to the European ETS. The news is likely to bring short-term relief on electricity prices while still maintaining uncertainty in the longer term. As anyone who has opened a power bill in recent years would know, prices have been skyrocketing. Meanwhile while investment in the industry has stalled completely. The era of coal-fired power stations appears to be over but there is no consensus on what should replace it. As Origin Energy boss Grant King told the ABC on Sunday continual change in carbon policy was making matters less clear as to what other forms of generation industry ought to invest in. "The change in carbon price from $24 to, say, a $6 or $8, is a very material change in the relative cost of generation from coal, various types of coal and gas," Mr King said. Matters are muddied further by Coalition threats to remove the ETS completely if elected to government but their 'direct action' policy is just as confusing and unhelpful as the Government's. A recent Energy Users Association of Australia study found we already pay the highest electricity prices in the developed world and lack of productivity in the sector was only making matters worse. Yet there is hardly any political discussion about what has the potential to do severe economic and social damage. It is about time electricity became an election issue before the lights go out on Australia.

Editorial details Jim Campbell 4662 7368 editorial@suratbasin.com.au

Surat BasinNEWS Advertising details Laurell Ison 4662 7368 advertise@suratbasin.com.au

Please, vote yes

Mitigation moving

Ray Brown Western Downs Mayor

Robert Loughnan Maranoa Mayor

Investing in the community

COMMENT Campbell Newman

Premier of Queensland

aturally the Surat Basin is a real focus for the government's involvement with the resources sector, but we're also investing in the social and community needs of the region. Recently, Police and Community Safety Minister Jack Dempsey visited Chinchilla to officially hand over the keys to a new $183,000 fully-equipped Toyota Troop Carrier for the local ambulance station. Jack

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tells me was very pleased to get to Chinchilla to meet the locals and hear firsthand about how the new vehicle is helping them do their valuable work. It has been on the road for some time and has really proven its value with crews now able to get across difficult terrain to reach sick and injured patients. It certainly gives local paramedics a safe and practical environment to deliver a high standard of prehospital medical care. Dalby Fire Station also received a new $375,000 fully-equipped

fire vehicle earlier this year, which is already proving invaluable throughout the district. As many of you would already know, the government has released more than 8,700 square kilometres of new land for resource exploration. It's a further boost to the petroleum and gas sectors, but it is important to emphasise that this process only grants companies the right to explore, not the right to develop the resource or engage in any commercial petroleum and gas

production. The land is now open for competitive tender and applicants will be assessed according to their proposed work program, technical and financial capability, and their capacity to meet all relevant evaluation criteria - including complying with strict environmental, strategic cropping land, land access and native title requirements. There are six areas subject to the tender and you can find out more about them by logging on to www.dnrm.qld.gov.au

Fi nd out m ore about t hem by l oggi ng o n to www.dnrm.qld.gov.a u

Darling Downs Regional Plan

he draft Darling Downs Regional Plan is also out there for comment, and I encourage everyone to have their say before the September 20 deadline for comments.The region has some of Queensland's most

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diverse agricultural assets and an abundance of coal, natural gas and other resource deposits, and it's important that everyone has the chance to have their say on how to balance the two sectors. The final plan will help ensure the region's towns

and important agricultural land are protected and can co-exist with the growth in the resources sector. The final plan will set out the criteria that will need to be met so agriculture and resources can successfully co-exist within mapped Priority Agricultural Areas.

The plan covers the local government areas of Balonne Shire Council, and the Goondiwindi, Maranoa, Southern Downs, Toowoomba and Western Downs regional councils, and if you want to have your say log on to www.dsdip.qld.gov.au/darling-

h a v e y o u r s a y l o g o n t o w w w. d s d i p . q l d . g o v. a u / d a r l i n g - d o w n s


opinions

Roma Flood mitigation project moves forward

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stages. It is estimated that we will be able to announce a successful tenderer in the coming weeks.

o far, July has seen the progression of some key milestones for the Roma Flood Mitigation Project.

Earlier this month, Council resolved to support the Alternative Alignment for the Stage 1 levee.This levee path has had four enhancements to the alignment approved by Council in March 2013.These adjustments are the result of extensive consultation with property owners directly affected by the Stage 1 levee, in addition to a technical review of its original path. The four enhancements to the levee include:

Increase the length of the levee at the airport to provide increased immunity to the runway during flood events (there was a risk the original Stage 1 levee would allow flood water to inundate the runway and cause the airport to shutdown during a flood)

Reduce the length of the original Stage 1 levee at the Lovell Street end to avoid some protected vegetation along Bungil Creek

Shift the original Stage 1 levee further to the north where it runs parallel to McPhie Street (this will improve the amenity for property owners on the northern side of McPhie Street) Shift the original Stage 1 further to the east where it runs parallel to Edwardes Street (this will improve the amenity for property owners on the eastern side of Edwardes Street)

Preliminary investigations have resulted in a number of potential mitigation options for Stage 2 of the project. Further modelling and hydraulic impacts of these options will then be investigated.We expect that a preferred position for Stage 2 will be brought back to Council next month; from here, consultation with the community will follow so we can share and explain the options and gather much needed feedback from our residents. While these investigations continue, it is imperative for us to keep voicing our need for funding to complete our flood mitigation protection of Roma.While we have secured the funds for Stage 1, I will

COMMENT Cr Robert Loughnan Mayor of Maranoa Regional Council

continue pressing the importance to our federal politicians of the need for financial assistance to support Stage 2. The Roma Flood Mitigation Project is a massive task for this Council. I commend all the work that has and is still to be undertaken by our staff, contractors and Councillors to ensure that we implement the most effective and cost efficient mitigation measures possible to protect our residents.

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opinions Darling Downs Regional Plan out now

Feel free to ask questions J

Spotlight on future CSG developments

Q

COMMENT

Howard Hobbs MP Member for Warrego Shadow Minister for Local Government and ATSI Partnerships

uly is estimates month on the Parliamentary timetable. Many people would ask the question what is estimates - well it is a great opportunity to ask questions of Ministers and Departmental Officers regarding the programs and initiatives relevant to our region and my Electorate of Warrego, especially in relation to roads. The Estimates Committee that I Chair,Transport Housing and Local Government will be holding their hearing on Thursday 25th July commencing 9am and this can be watched live through the webcast at http://www.parliament.qld.gov.au/en/work-ofcommittees/broadcast-committee/live.

so they delivered benefits to customers through a greater choice of options, while leading to a more efficient electricity network. These changes might include stronger time-of-use signals, capacity and critical peak pricing, or a reduced reliance on volume charges which will give Queensland businesses and households innovative options, so they can benefit from reducing electricity usage at peak times. More details on Ergon Energy's tariff review are available at www.ergon.com.au and submissions to Ergon Energy can be made by 2 August 2013.

Darling Down Regional Plan out for comment I would like to bring to your readers attention the draft Darling Downs Regional Plan which is currently available for public comment. The Western Downs, Maranoa, and Balonne Council areas are covered by the draft plan.The plan intends to safeguard the most productive agricultural assets through mapped Priority Agricultural Areas (PAA), while ensuring the state can benefit from the coal, natural gas and other resource deposits. I encourage community members to read and comment on the draft Darling Downs Regional Plan and have your say on the detail. To view the plan and find out how to make a submission, visit www.dsdip.qld.gov.au/darling-downs. Consultation on the draft plan is open until Friday 20 September 2013.

Electricity Tariff Review out for comment Also available for public comment by consumers, businesses and interest groups is the review of the Ergon Energy's electricity tariffs. Several restructured tariffs are expected to start in 2014-15, with further tariff reform to be put in place over the 2015-2020 period. Electricity is an essential service and it is important that as much participation as possible occurs in the review process. If we think back 30 years, to the way we now use electricity in our homes, businesses, on our farms and in our industries is vastly different.That's why we need the community's input into developing new tariff structures. Ergon Energy is looking to alter the structure of tariffs

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ueensland Parliament's Agriculture, Resources and Environment Committee chair Ian Rickuss MP and accompanying members last month visited several coal seam gas sites in the Dalby district and met with Western Downs Regional Council to discuss what's occurring with proposed developments. There was positive discussion held on the major issues of land management, water and brine solutions, as well as on concerns about speed of housing construction and development throughout the region. Meanwhile, Queensland could be potentially on the cusp of the next energy boom as the Shale Gas industry has amazing potential. Even though shale gas is in its early stage in Queensland, it is shaping to be one of the new frontiers of the gas industry. On a recent visit to Darwin I held discussions with Northern Territory energy companies that have an operational presence in the Surat Basin but more prominently in the Western areas of Queensland, about the long-term potential of shale gas. There are many different aspects to CSG production and all states and the Federal Government are working with stakeholders to make sure the regulations for the shale industry ultimately protect

COMMENT Cr Ray Brown Mayor, Western Downs Regional Council

landholders and the environment. With the abundance of shale gas in Australia relatively unknown at this stage, there is a need to gather information on the potential opportunities for our region and understand the challenges that flow on the back of it. As you probably are well aware through the media, the Constitutional Recognition campaign aims solely to legally recognise local government in the Australian Constitution. It basically formalises what has been occurring over the past twenty years where the Federal Government provides financial funding directly to local government. While it will not in any way alter the governing powers of Federal, State and Local Government, without this direct funding from the Federal Government for local roads and community infrastructure, local government authorities would not be able to provide all the services that their local communities need. This is why it is important that you vote 'yes' at the National Referendum as it is crucial for the development of muchneeded infrastructure in the region.

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opinions

The nub of the reef debate T

will be judged harshly if they do not have the highest levels of environmental protection in their planning and operations. It is this reality that continues to drive positive changes to fishing, agriculture, tourism and port practices. Shipping movements in the Great Barrier Reef are the most closely monitored in the world.Thanks to expanded monitoring and sophisticated technology, the number of shipping incidents has fallen from one per year to less than one per decade while the rate of shipping has grown incrementally. Let us not forget that these ports are also lifelines for almost one million Queenslanders for imports including oil, general cargo and tourist shipping. Queensland has a vested interest in ensuring that the past 32 years of managed interaction between the Great Barrier Reef and adjoining industries and communities thrives. The only people campaigning to see the Great Barrier Reef declared 'in danger' by UNESCO's World Heritage Committee are environmental activists largely funded by international groups such as Greenpeace.

Michael Roche Chief Executive Queensland Resources Council

COMMENT

he debate over the health of the Great Barrier Reef is well defined as in two camps. One is a genuine effort to ensure the values of the iconic World Heritage Area are protected and the second a bald-faced campaign to shut down Queensland's major export industries. The minerals, energy, food, fibre and tourism industries working within and alongside the Great Barrier Reef represent 78 percent of the state's exports valued at $40 billion. To put that number into perspective, it is just shy of total revenues collected last year by the Queensland Government. Along with the operators of the 11 commercial ports incorporated into the Great Barrier Reef World Heritage Area 32 years ago, these industries coexist with the reef under the constant scrutiny of state, federal and international environmental agencies. In hindsight, the ports' inclusion in the 1981 World Heritage listing may have been a masterstroke in placing an enduring focus on ecologically sustainable development. Reef-based industries know they

Their primary goal is to shut Queensland's export coal and gas industries down at the same time Asia is trying to lift billions of people out of the energy poverty trap and modernise. Activist scaremongering over proposed port dredging and shipping ignores the scientific documentation of threats such as cyclones, Crown of Thorns starfish invasions, coastal run-off and the impacts of climate change by leading scientific institutions. The future demands renewed commitments to continuous improvements in environmental stewardship. It does not mean the sacrifice of one global value for another to appease activists with the attention span of an election campaign.

Co-existence blueprint The draft regional plans for the Darling Downs and central Queensland released for comment by the state

government provide present us with an opportunity to lead the nation in promoting genuine coexistence between two vital industry sectors - resources and agriculture. While the documentation is being digested, the end-game should always be about securing the best outcomes for Queensland. As confirmed by recent public opinion polling, there is an overwhelming appetite on the Darling Downs and central Queensland for productive coexistence between the resource and agricultural sectors. Queensland and the nation's interests are best served by growing both sectors. All stakeholders have appreciated the Deputy Premier's leadership throughout the regional plan development process in seeking to strike a balance between the preservation of agricultural land uses on the one hand and coexistence and development on the other. Given that the Deputy Premier's portfolio has responsibility for drawing together all the threads of economic development and planning, his influence over the process must continue, particularly in relation to the

status of existing exploration and resource development proposals. One thing the Queensland Government and all industry stakeholders can take credit for is their commitment to a process intent on promoting co-existence rather than retreating to a political view that it's all too hard.

No law changes needed for coal dust Queensland coal companies have responded to community concerns and are already taking steps to reduce coal dust from rail wagons, with veneering of coal on the western/metropolitan rail corridor in full swing. It involves the spraying of a biodegradable, non-toxic polymer to the surface of loaded coal before it leaves a rail-loading facility.The veneer forms a crust which, based on treatments in central Queensland, has reduced dust emissions by up to 90 percent.The process is also used extensively in other industries such as road construction. This is world's best practice. Research has failed to find anywhere in the world where physical covers or lids are used on coal wagons to reduce dust.

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down to page15 page16 page17 GasField Comission sworn in

Windy issue blows up amilies surrounding the proposed site for the Coopers Gap Wind Farm are banding together to fight the development. A small group of the 38 land owners in the Cooranga North area, opposing the wind farm, marched on Parliament House this month to argue against what they believed was an ineffective source of power. Members of the Cooranga North Concerned Citizens Group are community members living within 5km of the proposed location of the wind farm. The project has not moved beyond developer AGL's Initial Assessment Report released in May 2011. In an acoustic report, AGL stated that "there is currently no specific legislation or guidance for the assessment of noise

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Gas prices going up

emission from wind farms in Queensland". The initial assessment report, based on South Australian guidelines, states that wind farm noise should not exceed 40 decibels outside on non-stakeholder properties. Cooranga North Concerned Citizens Group spokesperson Bryan Lyons said this would breach the Queensland Government's Environment Protection (Noise) Act 2008, which states that audible noise must not exceed 30 decibels inside at night. "The project doesn't comply with the legislation - it's a black and white case," Mr Lyons said. Minister for Environment Andrew Powell said the Coopers Gap Wind Farm would "be expected to operate in accordance" with Queensland noise legislation. AGL has downplayed the

BRYAN LYONS Cooranga North Concerned Citizens Group spokesperson

“The project doesn't comply with the l e g i s l a t i o n - i t 's a b l a c k a n d w h i t e c a s e . ”

Head office Roma

CSG water laws

noise issue, stating on their website that "two people can comfortably stand directly under a turbine and have a conversation without raising their voices". The company has previously

conducted background noise tests on surrounding properties. Mr Powell also said that the development would benefit from actual noise assessments to determine the difference

between inside and outside noise. Although the location was of biggest concern to the 38 families, Mr Lyons said the group was confident that the wind farm would not go ahead.


BUSINESS page18 page19 Social impacts examined

Facelift for Carnarvon Gorge

Working for the people asFields Comission chairman John Cotter said the comission would be working to ensure landholders got a fair deal when negotiating with CSG companies. The commission's powers were officially sworn in on July 1 with the introduction of the GasFields Commission Act. This means the commission is now a statutory body with the power to review legislation and make recommendations to the government. Just two days after having their new powers sworn in, the commissioners met with industry leaders at the first official GasFields Community Leaders Council South in Roma. The meeting was a chance for

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commissioners, industry leaders, landholders, government representatives and AgForce members to gather and discuss some of the issues facing the industry. GasFields Commission chairman John Cotter said the fact that the government had made the GasFields Commission a statutory body indicated its seriousness about solidifying the relationship between the gas industry, the agricultural industry and the community. "It's a new precedent, it's never happened in this context and the industry takes it seriously," Mr Cotter said. Mr Cotter said he hoped the commission would be a body landholders could trust when negotiating with gas companies.

POWERS THAT BE: GasField commissioners Don Stiller, Rick Wilkinson,Ian Hayllor, John Cotter,Shane Charles and Steven Raine at the GasField Community Leaders Council South meeting in Roma. Photo: Rebecca George

"We'll be auditing how companies are complying with the land access code and our intention is to give landowners the confidence that they are on a much more level playing field," Mr Cotter said. "One of our functions is to see, not just 'is the information right?' but 'is it being implemented properly and effectively?' - and that's probably more important." Australia Pacific LNG CEO Page Maxson welcomed the creation of the GasFields Commission and

said it should be a positive for the industry, communities and landowners. "What it means is everyone, but particularly the community and individual landowners, has a body that they can turn to that they know has the formal authority to preside over this debate," Mr Maxson said. Deputy Premier and Minister for State Development, Infrastructure and Planning Jeff Seeney said the strength of the Commission came from its

independence and that it empowered the local community. "The GasFields Commission is made up of representatives of the local community and they belong to the community," he said. "I have been very diligent to ensure that the GasFields Commission is at arm’s length from government and that there is a clear separation‌ in so doing, they empower the community.They become a powerful tool for the community."

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down to BUSINESS

Case closed P

ublic comment has closed on the Federal Government's new "water trigger" law proposals. After gaining royal assent in late June, the new water resources criteria for CSG and large coal mines was put out for public comment in July. The coal seam gas industry and green groups had three weeks to have their say on the new laws in the Commonwealth environmental assessment process. The legislation is an amendment to Australia's national environment law, the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999 (EPBC Act) which regards water resources as a matter of national environmental significance, in relation to CSG and large coal mining development. Once approved such developments would require federal assessment and approval to

ensure the protection of water resources. The Government said there would still be a role for the Independent Expert Scientific Committee which is "expected" to continue to provide advice for CSG and large coal mining projects. This may require a federal environmental assessment, including assessments of significant impacts on water resources. Under existing legislation, projects with water related risks can only be regulated if they have flow-on impacts to existing matters of national environmental significance, such as nationally endangered plants and animals. The Federal Environment Department put out draft impact guidelines to quantify which projects could have impacts on ground and surface water flows, as well as the quality of underground water. The amendment still needs to be passed by both houses of parliament.

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down to BUSINESS

Price set to triple OPINION BY DEREK BARRY ore indications arrived last week the price of Australian domestic gas is likely to double or triple after 2014. Research from the Australia Institute said the wholesale price of $3 a gigajoule would likely go to $9 in three years.This would put pressure on businesses, mostly Victorian and West Australian manufacturers, that are dependent on gas. But that is the likely outcome once the eastern seaboard gas market becomes connected with the world. This backs up recent research from the Grattan Institute that predicts the same thing. The key is the coal seam gas to liquefied natural gas market which is about to open for export on the east coast. Higher prices in Asia have made CSG a very valuable commodity and the gas companies and their backers are spending $60b to extract the gas, and to build the pipelines and the LNG plants for export mostly to Asia. Those export plants are on Curtis Island where USconstruction giant Bechtel is building three massive facilities for Santos GLNG,

M

Origin APLNG and British Gas' QCLNG all next to each other. Rolling out in 2014, the plants will have a combined capacity of 20 million tonnes of LNG a year. They will take methane gas from the coal seams of the Surat Basin and supercool it to below - 160 °C so it condenses into liquid natural gas which can be compressed for shipping to China, Korea and Japan. In Japan customers will gladly pay $15 a gigajoule for the product. When you take away the $6 a gigilitre cost of liquefaction and transportation, what's left is called the netback price. Australian producers could charge a netback price of $9 a gigajoule and still find a Japanese buyer.With Gladstone available, why would local producers continue to sell to local customers at $3 a gigajoule? The domestic price is bound to find equilibrium with the export netback price as domestic supply drops. Given the size of the world market, the equilibrium will be mostly in the direction of the current world price. In the setting of that price, gas availability is not the issue. Instead as the Government's BREE (Bureau of Resources and Energy Economics) points out, the process of adjustment would depend on "consumers sensitivity to changes in gas prices." In a deal last year Origin agreed to supply

The gas companies admit price rises are coming but try to turn around the argument.

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Santos with 365 petajoules of gas from 2015.This will make it hard for domestic gas buyers on the east coast to secure supplies beyond 2014. Santos and Origin did not reveal the price but said it was linked to the oil market. At $100 a barrel of oil, that already pushes the gas price up to $7 a gigajoule, over twice as expensive as the domestic market. The gas companies admit price rises are coming but try to turn around the argument. They say domestic supply problem could be solved by more drilling and blame the campaign waged by the anti-coal seam gas protesters for driving up prices. However, they ignore the fact that huge facilities at Gladstone are changing the rules of the game.These facilities would not have been built if Queensland didn't identify coal seam gas as a power source.This huge new infrastructure will link us to the world market regardless of how much we produce. There is only one way to keep the price down - set a reserve price.That's what they do for WA's offshore industry. WA is behind Queensland in the production of CSG but has huge conventional sources of gas.These produce 60% of Australia's gas (twice as much as the combined eastern seaboard ). WA's gas network is not linked to the east but is linked by LNG plants to the world market with more to come.Yet WA has a gas reserve which insists a quota of 15% is kept for domestic use. It creates a guaranteed market currently more expensive than the eastern seaboard but has cushioned it from the higher

world gas price. On the east coast, there is no consensus on a reserve price. Analysis done by law firm Minter Ellison shows different parliaments have different ideas. The Federal Governemnt is against it while the opposition has not revealed its position.The South Australian,Tasmanian and the two territory governments are also against a reserve price.The NSW Government has recommended one but has not actioned on it. Queensland is different again. It actually has a loose reservation clause in law.The Queensland Government could require every tenement holder to set aside 15% for domestic use but no current contract has this proviso. Energy Minister Mark McArdle calls it "a last resort." The Australia Institute sees no reason a reservation price should not happen. It said a reserve would create two separate markets, one for domestic and one for international. Since producers currently extract sufficient gas to supply Australia at a low price, they could still earn healthy profits by selling additional gas at the world netback price.The gas reserve policy would therefore not act as a disincentive to further investment in new gas production.With four states and one territory involved, getting an eastern seaboard reservation price would be more complicated than the current one in WA but still doable, the Institute said. The gas industry is against a reserve, saying the cheaper local price would prevent investment in new supply.

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down to BUSINESS

EXPERT PANEL: TSBE CEO Shane Charles, Robert Loughnan -Maranoa Regional Council mayor, Lifeline Darling Downs CEO Derek Tuffield and Deloitte partner Geoffrey Cann and Andrew Harvey, CEO, Darling Downs South West Medicare Local.

Panel lifts lid on impacts ocial impacts of the developing CSG industry on local communities in the Surat Basin were discussed at length during a panel discussion hosted by the TSBE. The event, held earlier this month, brought over 190 business people together to discuss the issues surrounding social impacts. The evening highlighted the facts around the topic and encouraged robust conversation about the challenges and opportunities arising from our community's close proximity to rapidly increasing growth and development. The night featured an expert panel that included Lifeline Darling Downs and South West Queensland CEO Derek Tuffield, Medicare Local CEO, Andrew Harvey, Maranoa Regional Council mayor Robert Loughnan

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and Deloitte partner Geoffrey has placed significant pressure on the region are retained. Cann. families with loved ones working When asked what the next 5 The four panelists drew from in the sector and for those not years would bring Mr Loughnan their unique and extensive earning the large salaries there was pleased to suggest the region experiences in the field to make are also significant housing would see continued growth and comment and answer questions affordability and other financial activity and subsequently more from the audience about social concerns." benefits to the community. impact. Maranoa Regional Council Mayor Andrew Harvey has been CEO of Mr Tuffield said CSG activity had Rob Loughnan has seen firsthand Darling Downs South West not only boosted the economy the impacts of CSG in the region Medicare Local since its but had allowed family units in and said he was driving the establishment in February 2012 many cases to stay together as reform of council planning and spoke about health services increased opportunities are processes to prepare for, in the region. brought into the region. accommodate and benefit from Mr Harvey said health services "We (Lifeline) have also been well the resources boom, whilst already under strain regionally supported by the industry which striving to ensure that the good had been further pressured by has assisted the delivery of aspects of the current lifestyle in the large FIFO/DIDO population. initiatives providing He said future GEOFFREY CANN much needed suicide strategies would aim Deloitte partner prevention, crisis, and to see important mental health health services more support services to readily available in “It is only through increased the region," Mr areas for those that discussion and transparency around Tuffield said. need it most. the impacts that better understanding "It is not all good Geoffrey Cann shared and best practice management of the news though; the his experience in issues can result.” shift work structure Alberta which has

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approximately 113,000 gas wells and clearly is a region impacted by CSG or coal bed methane. Mr Cann explained that while he did not have one answer that would fix all the issues, his observations of Alberta were very similar to what is happening here. "It is only through increased discussion and transparency around the impacts that better understanding and best practice management of the issues can result," Mr Cann said. TSBE CEO Shane Charles said it was encouraging to see questions being raised by the audience on the night. "It is great to see the community rally around to discuss the issues and potential solutions while also supporting the many positive impacts, both in the community and the economy, that are being generated by our region's growth and development," he said.

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down to BUSINESS New info centre for Carnarvon Gorge

Facelift for gorge ne of the Maranoa's greatest tourism attractions, Carnarvon Gorge, will soon have a new information centre thanks to the State Government and the Queensland Gas Company (QGC). The Minister for National Parks, Recreation, Sport and Racing Steve Dickson said the information centre would help draw tourists to the area to Carnarvon Park. "We've got one of the best national parks in Australia and a lot of people don't know about it, so I'd like to get the message out to people - come and visit Carnarvon Gorge, it's fantastic," Mr Dickson said. "The old building was built in the

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'70s, it needs rejuvenating, we've just got to do better and we've got to give the public better." QGC gave $500,000 towards the $986,000 project as part of a deal with the State Government which will give them commercial access to state forests. QGC's general manager for land and community Brian Lorigan said investments like this were an important part of its corporate social responsibility. "We thought that this was a good opportunity to give something back to our communities, and we came to a commercial arrangement with the Departments where all parties benefit," Mr Lorigan said. "We are very pleased to see the money going to really good

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NEWS

Surat Basin

R I G H T I N T H E H E A R T O F T H E S U R AT B A S I N

BRIAN LORIGAN QGC's general manager for land and community

“We thought that this was a good opportunity to give something back to our communities.”

causes, and one of the benefits we are seeing is a more transparent outcome from the state." Mr Lorigan said the staff at Carnarvon have already put some of QGC's money into safety gear,

improving training for the rangers and upgrading systems in the office. Minister Dickson said the next step in improving the national park's facilities would be to upgrade the roads to the park.

"There's two roads leading into Carnarvon National Park and it's blocked for three months of the year," Mr Dickson said. "We fix up those roads and you're going to have 25% more productivity.


building the

page21 page22 page23

Expo

Local couple’s business booms

Clein coming up trumps

Cash splash

S U R AT B A S I N M I N I N G A N D E N E R G Y

his year's Surat Basin Expo generated $6million for the regional economy and created a buzz or the vast array of products and services available in the region The two-day June event at the Toowoomba Showgrounds attracted more than 500 exhibitors from across the region and the state to showcase their services and products. Australian Events director Bob Carroll said exhibitors from around Australia

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and from overseas attended this year’s event and around 7000 visitors flooded the gates. "The event has been hailed as an enormous success by all areas of industry," Mr Carroll said. Mr Carroll said there was tremendous feedback from international exhibitors and it was a reflection of what was happening in the Surat Basin. "Local councils and the Surat Basin Enterprise have been overwhelmed with investment enquiries," he said. Mr Carroll said one exhibitor from

Rockhampton rang him to say how impressed he was that all the Toowoomba and Surat Basin councils and chambers of commerce were working together. "The councils and chambers are all on the same bus," he said. "They are aware of each other's weaknesses and strengths and there was no animosity - they were all working for the best outcome for the region." Surat Basin News was there to catch all the action. See page 27 for more photos.

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BASIN Proud to call Chinchilla home GAS... MINING... CIVIL... T AGRICULTURAL

ony and Angela Clark are making the most of the boom conditions here in the Western Downs, diversifying their business and seizing mid-life independence. Both from a rural background, the husband and wife team run the only locally owned and operated weed and seed washdown and heavy haulage business in Chinchilla. Though Tony jokes that he gets nervous any time he can't see the silos near Bulldog Park, running T&A Complete Contracting Services has seen him and his wife travel the length of Australia for a job. A passion they share is pressing home the importance of washdowns for interstate vehicles. "We have a zero-tolerance policy for anything less than a professional approach," he said. "Seeds and weed infestations can ruin entire generations of families; I've seen how properties can break people. "We certainly don't want that on our hands." When they're not keeping Western Downs trucks weed free, the couple can be found doing anything from vacuum excavation to transporting a 55 tonne machine down the Warrego Highway, with Angela piloting. Working together makes the job enjoyable, and as their two teenage children grow they are finding that a strong working relationship is giving real longevity to their marriage. To top it off, a local acquaintance gratefully became their first employee at the local

"As as a result we take our safety and our reputation very seriously; you don't take chances in your own community."

Ser vice is what you get pub over a beer and a handshake; it just goes to show some country traditions die hard.

about the money though; after 41 years in the region, he and Angela have no plans to move, boom or no boom.

As they diversify their business, the couple are finding deliveries, vacuum excavation, portable security fencing and providing equipment for gas mining sites are lucrative projects in the region.Tony said it was not

"At the end of the day, we have to live here, and the best thing about the job is client satisfaction," he said.

For any job, big or small, be sure to call T&A Contracting Services on 0488 691 222

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building the BASIN basin Business continues to boom for Chinchilla local

Clein coming up trumps ustin Clein has been running Clein Excavations & Tipper Hire for the past four years and said business was booming. Employing more than 40 staff Clein Excavations has grown exponentially since its inception in 2009. "Business is very good," Justin said. Located in Chinchilla on Emmerson St Clein Excavations & Tipper Hire specialises in all aspects of civil, LNG and mining works.

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Justin said he loves the opportunities of being able to work in his chosen field. "I enjoy the challenges it poses as well being able to give something back the local community," he said. And as a Chinchilla local Justin knows only too well how important it is to look after the local community. "I think it's important local business support other local businesses and local community groups," he said. "Without their assistance we wouldn't be where we are today."

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Clein Excavations & Tipper Hire is proud to service all areas of Queensland and Justin said safety is always the number one priority. "We strive to have a zero harm policy and work towards a safe and harm free workplace," he said. Some of the equipment available from Clein Excavations includes; dozers, graders, excavators, rollers, loaders, water trucks,

semi water tankers, truck and dogs side tippers, widening, low

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building the BASIN

Splash of cash Helping Wandoan swim coaches keep kids safe

Murphy Pipe and Civil Communications Manager Glenn Pfluger was on hand to present a $2000 cheque to Wandoan Swim Club students and their coaches Leesa Rathbone (left) and Christine Sinnamon.

andoan kids learning how to swim will be getting the very best training from their swim coaches now, thanks to the support of Murphy Pipe and Civil. The pipeline company, which is currently building a 120km pipeline just outside of Wandoan, helped out the local

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swimming club by paying for their two coaches, Christine Sinnamon and Leesa Rathbone, to attend a three-day intensive swim coach clinic. The clinic has been designed to develop the skills of coaches so they can better deliver swimming advice to their students. Wandoan Swim Club Coach Leesa Rathbone said local kids

learning to swim would get immense benefit from the new skills the two coaches had brought back to Wandoan from the clinic. "Swimming is a big part of country life, so it's important that we as coaches are able to provide our young students with the necessary skills to ensure they are not only safe

LEESA RATHBONE Wandoan Swim Club Coach

“ We a r e a l r e a d y s e e i n g b i g i m p r o v e m e n t s in the ability of our club members thanks to the enhanced coaching skills we have gained from the clinic.” in the water, but also that they develop into proficient swimmers as they get older," Leesa said. "We are already seeing big

improvements in the ability of our club members thanks to the enhanced coaching skills we have gained from the clinic."

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places and

page 25 page 26 page 27 Out and about at the expo

Helping hand for farmers

TSBE happy snaps

No looking back

Alana Leddy, Ciara Sheehy and Jane Mackie are playing a key role in the development of Queensland's resources sector. It's amazing the kind of people you find driving 40 tonne dump trucks these days. Take Alaina Leddy, Ciara Sheehy and Jane Mackie three women working for Murphy Pipe and Civil as heavy machine operators on the 120km Woleebee Creek to Glebe Weir Pipeline Project just outside of Wandoan. But don't leap to the conclusion that this is just "another" story about women working in a maledominated industry. The amazing thing is where many of these people working in the industry come from in terms of their former careers paths. After years as a financial planner, Alaina discarded a lap-top filled with fluctuating financial data to take command of a fleet of massive earthmoving equipment used to build pipelines. Similarly, her colleagues Ciara and Jane, also departed from successful careers in social work, hospitality and rural property management to be a part of the army of workers enabling Queensland to take advantage of its biggest resources boom in

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history. So what drove them to "up stumps" from their chosen professions to enter an industry that, to the average bystander, couldn't be more far removed from their former roles? According to Alaina, Ciara and Jane - the leap of faith was pretty easy to take and they've never looked back with regret. "I really liked working in the financial sector, but I was eager to try something new before possibly getting stuck in a career rut, and with all the major development taking place across Australia in the resources sector, it just seemed like an exciting industry to be in," Alaina said. "If you had of asked me five years ago what I thought I would be doing, I probably would not have even thought of driving heavy machinery, but life's like that, and I am really enjoying what I am doing now," she said. The story's the same with Ciara, a former social worker, and Jane, who spent years either waiting tables or working the land. Both enjoyed their former roles but yearned for "something a

little different and left of centre" and were similarly drawn to the industry. "I used to have a very nice view of the city from my office window, but it's hard to beat watching the sun rise over the country side from my new office, which is now the cabin of a dump truck," Ciara said. Jane, the only local of the trio, said working in the country was not a new concept for her and she has had similar machinery operation roles in some of the biggest mines in the country. "I'm a Chinchilla girl, but have worked in this type of industry for some time now, after years working in hospitality and on the land - it's good to be closer to home and family and driving these big rigs is very enjoyable," Jane said. "People look at the size of this machine and say to me, "geez, that's massive' but I then tell them that the last dump truck I drove in the mines could fit three of these machines quite comfortably in the back tray. "All three of us are fully licensed

to drive a whole fleet of machines required for pipeline construction.� So, the big question is - is it hard to drive these behemoths? According to Ciara, it's more about being vigilant. "They are quite easy to drive, and Murphy Pipe and Civil puts you through a very comprehensive training program to ensure you know what you are doing before you head out to the field, to ensure you are operating the machines safely. "If anything, it's the mental task of being constantly focused and concentrating on what you are doing that is the most challenging part of the job - the actual driving is the easy bit," she said. Ciara agreed, that while

being away from loved ones was sometime tough, living and working in a small community also had plenty of benefits. "I am from a small Irish town, so am quite used to this type of lifestyle...You soon get to know the locals and I really feel like I am a part of Wandoan," Ciara said Would they continue to play a part in the resources industry? Jane summed it up pretty well. "Queensland has a great opportunity to develop the resources it has, and I think we need to ensure we take full advantage of this opportunity to ensure a stronger State for future generations and I look forward to playing my part in this chapter of Queensland's growth."

CIARA SHEEHY Murphy Pipe and Civil

“ I f a n y t h i n g , i t 's t h e m e n t a l t a s k o f b e i n g constantly focused and concentrating on what you are doing that is the most challenging part of the job - the actual driving is the easy bit.�


FACES page28 Meredith’s mission

Surat Basin Expo draws a crowd

Amanda and Gerard Mulligan of Roma check out the Surat Basin Expo pavilion. Photos: Derek Barry

Laurell Ison (Chinchilla) and Nicole Taylor (Dalby) with copies of our sister paper Surat Basin News at the expo.

Easternwell showed off its sponsonship of Monster Kawasaki supercross team at the Expo: Scott Couacaud (Easternwell), Troy Carroll (team manager) Jay Marmont and Adam Monea (riders).

SES members enjoy the Surat Basin Expo: Samantha Lane, Lesley Bennett (both Goombungee), James Ross (Cecil Plains) and Shirley Abrahams (Goombungee).

At the Maranoa Regional Council stall at the Surat Basin Expo are Deputy Mayor Scott Wason and economic development manager Ed Sims.

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places and FACES

Lending a hand on the land

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rought -stricken farmers from Murweh and Paroo shires shared 1000 bales of hay, donated by Origin Energy. The seven farmers took home over 50 bales of much needed feed for their stock, and thanked the Chinchilla Lions Club for their help. Origin and Lions volunteers loaded 1500 bales of hay on Chinchilla Carrying Company and Mick Moffatt's trucks and transported west free of charge. The deed did not go unnoticed by the farmers like Robert Crichton from Morven. Mr Crichton has several hundred head of stock, and was touched by the gesture from Miles and Chinchilla. "It's very nice to know someone from further down where they're not in a drought is prepared to donate hay for the animals out here," he said. Origin Energy regional manager Rob Hart said the company continued to use land for farms once gas infrastructure was in place, and currently runs 23 properties. "Collectively we have over about 200,000 acres in the region, and when we're not using it we farm it as farmers would normally do," he said. "That's why we've had this excess hay; rather than sell it we thought people more in need of could use it." Former Chinchilla Lions president Col Thompson was one of the volunteers who made the relief possible, and was pleased to extend a helping hand. "We're just doing what Lions do," he said.

ROB HART Origin Energy regional manager

“Collectively we have over about 200,000 acres in the region, and when we're not using it we farm it as farmers would normally do.”

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places and FACES

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Stewart Mulligan - Waminda Services Limited, Sharni Adams - Calibre Accounting, Kathryn Sainsbury Calibre Accounting.

Brian Hodges - Ray White Commercial, John McCormack, McCormack Industries.

Troy Martin - Puma Energy and Michael Matthewson - Wiley.

Dan McManus - Westec Civil, Scott Standfast Wagners, Kellee Dunn - Westec Civil and Matthew Erskine - Decmil.

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twelve hour shift driving a dump truck for Ostwald Bros is not enough to deter all round athlete Meredith Lane from training for the race of her life, the Sunshine Coast half marathon. Meredith, affectionately known as ‘Mez’, has a special reason for wanting to be 100% on the day as she is determined to better the time set by her mum Leanda last year. Meredith, 24, has been working with construction company Ostwald Bros at its K128 site, near Injune, for the past year. She works a 21 day on-seven day off roster operating dump trucks, Moxy Meredith said she got tremendous watercarts and compactors. support from Ostwald Bros and her It will be the first time Meredith has workmates. "I am constantly being tackled a distance race but living on the asked how training is going and I Sunshine Coast, she loves the outdoors can't believe how much support and including rock climbing, snowboarding, encouragement I have got," she said. fishing, running and the beach. Meredith said the support also came Meredith is also a keen sportswoman from Clough Downer and ESS and has been in full training for the workers at the K128 site. Sunshine Coast half Marathon, She said her partner Luke, who 21.1kilometers, which is a fundraising event for Ronald MEREDITH LANE McDonald House on Ostwald Bros August 25. After her shift or when at home, she trains five nights a “I have committed myself to this week, alternating challenge and push myself to between gym and 10stick to my training schedule.” 12km training runs often in the dark.

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the news online

Meredith’s mission

www.suratbasinnews.com.au www.issuu.com/suratbasinnews

places and FACES ISSN 1835-6400

View the back editions on line Read all of our back issues on the internet at: www.issuu.com/ suratbasinnews

The latest news on line Keep in touch with the latest news with a just a mouse click

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Surat Basin News Published by Chinchilla Newspapers Pty Ltd, 12 Mayne Street Chinchilla Q4413 Printed by APN Print Toowoomba 50 Industrial Avenue Toowoomba Q4350 2012 General Manager - David Richardson, 12 Mayne Street Chinchilla Q4413, PO Box 138 Chinchilla Q4413, Phone 07 4662 7368

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Sbn july 2013