STO) touts Queensland’s second pipeline as solution to east coast gas crisis

Santos aims to begin construction of the pipeline in 2024 subject to remaining approvals. However, it still has to overcome potential obstacles from landowners and local councils who may oppose the project.

Credit Suisse analyst Saul Kavonic said the Hunter pipeline “makes the most sense” for the gas network and could solve infrastructure constraints on the east coast, but would likely face significant opposition when it comes to environment and access to land.

“In a world unconstrained by social license and political considerations, the Hunter pipeline would be built every time,” Kavonic said. “But there are still a lot of social license issues to settle first.”

The Narrabri coal gas project in northern New South Wales, which could supply half of the state’s gas needs, has been on the front line of a years-long struggle between the gas industry and Australians worried about the impact of drilling on the environment and climate. Santos spent $1.5 billion and faced years of delays to approve the project amid thousands of objections over its feared impacts on the Pilliga State Forest and its contribution to global warming.

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