Documents regarding scientific testing of coal seam gas extraction impacts to the Condamine River, Queensland

Richard Smith made this Freedom of Information request to Independent Expert Scientific Committee on Coal Seam Gas and Large Coal Mining Development

The request was refused by Independent Expert Scientific Committee on Coal Seam Gas and Large Coal Mining Development.

From: Richard Smith

Delivered

Dear Independent Expert Scientific Committee on Coal Seam Gas and Large Coal Mining Development (IESC),

The Condamine River is a tributary of the Darling River. Water from the Condamine River is used for town water supply and for irrigation.

In 2012 methane gas was observed bubbling from the water of the Condamine River. This has been the subject of wide media coverage and the subject of press releases issued by the company holding the petroleum & coal seam gas extraction leases of the surrounding area.

I therefore request the following Government Information:

a) Documents held, produced or considered by the IESC relating to any physical or chemical testing on or around the Condamine river and surrounding banks in Queensland in the period 2012 to 2018; and

b) Documents held, produced or considered by the IESC relating to any testing of water quality, including testing for any dissolved methane, hydrogen sulfide, heavy metals or other materials that would be present in coal seam gas seams on or around the Condamine river in Queensland in the period 2012 to 2018; and

c) Documents held, produced or considered by the IESC relating to any modelling or assessment of the impacts of coal seam gas extraction to the Condamine river in Queensland in the period 2012 to 2018; and

d) Documents held, produced or considered by the IESC relating to any records of natural gas seeps in any watercourse in Australia.

If this can be answered as informal request, please do so.

Otherwise, please proceed with this as a formal request under the Freedom of Information principles & framework, i.e. the Freedom of Information Act 1982 & other associated guidelines and regulations.

Yours faithfully,

Richard Smith

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From: FOI Contact Officer
Independent Expert Scientific Committee on Coal Seam Gas and Large Coal Mining Development

Dear Mr Smith

 

Freedom of Information Request no. 181207

 

The Department of the Environment and Energy (the Department) acknowledges
receipt of your request under the Freedom of Information Act 1982 (FOI
Act) which seeks:

 

a) Documents held, produced or considered by the IESC relating to any
physical or chemical testing on or around the Condamine river and
surrounding banks in Queensland in the period 2012 to 2018; and

 

b) Documents held, produced or considered by the IESC relating to any
testing of water quality, including testing for any dissolved methane,
hydrogen sulfide, heavy metals or other materials that would be present in
coal seam gas seams on or around the Condamine river in Queensland in the
period 2012 to 2018; and

 

c) Documents held, produced or considered by the IESC relating to any
modelling or assessment of the impacts of coal seam gas extraction to the
Condamine river in Queensland in the period 2012 to 2018; and

 

d) Documents held, produced or considered by the IESC relating to any
records of natural gas seeps in any watercourse in Australia.

 

The Department is required to process valid requests within 30 days after
the day a request was received. This 30 day processing period may be
extended under certain circumstances, for example, where the Department
decides it reasonable to consult with third parties. If the processing
period is extended, you will be informed of the extension and the reasons
for it.

 

The statutory deadline for providing a decision on this request is
currently 14 January 2019.

 

The Department makes two assumptions that affect the scope of the request.
These are set out below.

 

It is the usual practice of the Department:

•                    not to disclose the personal information of junior
officers or the personal contact details of senior officers of the State
or Federal governments (including those of the Department). The names of
senior officers will generally be released. Your request will be processed
on the assumption that you do not intend to capture these details within
its scope.

•                    not to release duplicates of any document captured
within the scope of the request. Further, where two documents fall within
the scope one differs from the other only with respect to minor editorial
changes (such as spelling or grammar corrections), only the later version
of the document will be treated as within scope.  Your request will be
processed on the assumption that you do not intend to capture duplicates
or documents that the Department considers duplicates (as per the above
explanation) within the scope of your request.

 

Please inform us if you do not agree to the request being processed by the
Department on the above assumptions.

 

Please note that information released under the FOI Act may later be
published online on our disclosure log.

 

We will contact you using the email you provided. Please advise if you
would prefer us to use an alternative means of contact.

 

If you have any questions, please contact the FOI Contact Officer on (02)
6274 2098.

 

Regards

 

 

Felicity Slater

FOI Contact Officer  | General Counsel Branch

Department of the Environment and Energy

a:  GPO Box 787 CANBERRA  ACT  2600

t:   02 6274 2098

e:  [1][email address]

 

 

 

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From: FOIDR


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Attachment RQ18 03720 15AB letter to A DOEE and Smith.pdf
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Our reference: RQ18/03720

Agency reference: FOI 181207

Mr Richard Smith

 

Sent by email: [1][FOI #5166 email]

Extension of time under s 15AB

Dear Mr Smith

Please find attached correspondence in relation to the processing of your
FOI request.

Kind regards

 

[2]O A I C logo   Adie Chang  |  Assistant Review
Officer

Freedom of Information

Office of the Australian
Information Commissioner

GPO Box 5218 Sydney NSW 2001  |
 [3]oaic.gov.au

+61 2 9284 9686  |  
[4][email address]
[5]Facebook | [6]LinkedIn | [7]Twitter |   [8]Subscribe [9]Subscribe to
icon OAICnet newsletter

 

 

 

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References

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9. https://www.oaic.gov.au/media-and-speech...

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From: FOI Contact Officer
Independent Expert Scientific Committee on Coal Seam Gas and Large Coal Mining Development

Dear Mr Smith

Freedom of Information Request no. 181207

 

The Department of the Environment and Energy (the Department) acknowledges
receipt of your request under the Freedom of Information Act 1982 (FOI
Act) which seeks:

 

The Condamine River is a tributary of the Darling River. Water from the
Condamine River is used for town water supply and for irrigation.

 

In 2012 methane gas was observed bubbling from the water of the Condamine
River. This has been the subject of wide media coverage and the subject of
press releases issued by the company holding the petroleum & coal seam gas
extraction leases of the surrounding area.

 

I therefore request the following Government Information:

 

a) Documents held, produced or considered by the IESC relating to any
physical or chemical testing on or around the Condamine river and
surrounding banks in Queensland in the period 2012 to 2018; and

 

b) Documents held, produced or considered by the IESC relating to any
testing of water quality, including testing for any dissolved methane,
hydrogen sulfide, heavy metals or other materials that would be present in
coal seam gas seams on or around the Condamine river in Queensland in the
period 2012 to 2018; and

 

c) Documents held, produced or considered by the IESC relating to any
modelling or assessment of the impacts of coal seam gas extraction to the
Condamine river in Queensland in the period 2012 to 2018; and

 

d) Documents held, produced or considered by the IESC relating to any
records of natural gas seeps in any watercourse in Australia.

 

If this can be answered as informal request, please do so.

 

The Department is required to process valid requests within 30 days after
the day a request was received. This 30 day processing period may be
extended under certain circumstances, for example, where the Department
decides it reasonable to consult with third parties. If the processing
period is extended, you will be informed of the extension and the reasons
for it.

 

The statutory deadline for providing a decision on this request is
currently 13 February 2019.

 

The Department makes two assumptions that affect the scope of the request.
These are set out below.

 

It is the usual practice of the Department:

·         not to disclose the personal information of junior officers or
the personal contact details of senior officers of the State or Federal
governments (including those of the Department). The names of senior
officers will generally be released. Your request will be processed on the
assumption that you do not intend to capture these details within its
scope.

·         not to release duplicates of any document captured within the
scope of the request. Further, where two documents fall within the scope
one differs from the other only with respect to minor editorial changes
(such as spelling or grammar corrections), only the later version of the
document will be treated as within scope.  Your request will be processed
on the assumption that you do not intend to capture duplicates or
documents that the Department considers duplicates (as per the above
explanation) within the scope of your request.

 

Please inform us if you do not agree to the request being processed by the
Department on the above assumptions.

 

Please note that information released under the FOI Act may later be
published online on our disclosure log.

 

We will contact you using the email you provided. Please advise if you
would prefer us to use an alternative means of contact.

 

If you have any questions, please contact the FOI Contact Officer on (02)
6274 2098.

 

Regards

 

Felicity Slater

FOI Contact Officer  | General Counsel Branch

Department of the Environment and Energy

a:  GPO Box 787 CANBERRA  ACT  2600

t:   02 6274 2098

e:  [1][email address]

 

 

References

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1. mailto:[email address]

Link to this

From: FOI Contact Officer
Independent Expert Scientific Committee on Coal Seam Gas and Large Coal Mining Development

Hello Mr Smith,

We are informally consulting with Arrow Energy Pty Ltd in relation to your request. The company has asked to know who has submitted the request, do you consent to the release of your name to Arrow Energy?

Kind regards

FOI Contact Officer | General Counsel Branch
Department of the Environment and Energy
a: GPO Box 787 CANBERRA ACT 2600
t: 02 6274 2098
e: [Independent Expert Scientific Committee on Coal Seam Gas and Large Coal Mining Development request email]

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From: Richard Smith

Delivered

Dear FOI Contact Officer,

Thank you for your letter today regarding my request for information of 14 December 2018.

In regards to your query, I do not object to the passing on of my name to the third party to further the processing of my request for information.

I would be interested to know what changes in the process of the search for information in regards to the FOI request, with the disclosure of my name.

Does the third party have a preference for dealing with one person over another?

Yours sincerely,

Richard Smith

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From: FOI Contact Officer
Independent Expert Scientific Committee on Coal Seam Gas and Large Coal Mining Development

Dear Mr Smith

Thank you for your prompt reply.

The third party have advised they do not have preference for dealing with one person over another. They simply like to know the identity of the applicant with FOI requests they are associated with.

Kind regards

FOI Contact Officer | General Counsel Branch Department of the Environment and Energy
a: GPO Box 787 CANBERRA ACT 2600
t: 02 6274 2098

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From: FOI Contact Officer
Independent Expert Scientific Committee on Coal Seam Gas and Large Coal Mining Development

Hello again Mr Smith,

Another company we're informally consulting with in relation to your request, Origin Energy, has asked to know your identity. Do you consent to us providing your name to the company?

Kind regards

FOI Contact Officer  | General Counsel Branch
Department of the Environment and Energy
a:  GPO Box 787 CANBERRA  ACT  2600
t:   02 6274 2098
e: [Independent Expert Scientific Committee on Coal Seam Gas and Large Coal Mining Development request email]

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From: FOI Contact Officer
Independent Expert Scientific Committee on Coal Seam Gas and Large Coal Mining Development


Attachment FOI 181207 Notification of charges.pdf
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Hello Mr Smith,

 

Please find attached a notification of charges letter in relation to your
FOI request 181207.

 

Kind regards

 

FOI Contact Officer  | General Counsel Branch

Department of the Environment and Energy

a:  GPO Box 787 CANBERRA  ACT  2600

t:   02 6274 2098

e:  [1][Independent Expert Scientific Committee on Coal Seam Gas and Large Coal Mining Development request email]

 

References

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1. mailto:[Independent Expert Scientific Committee on Coal Seam Gas and Large Coal Mining Development request email]

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From: FOI Contact Officer
Independent Expert Scientific Committee on Coal Seam Gas and Large Coal Mining Development


Attachment FOI 181207 Deemed Withdrawal For Non Payment of Charges.pdf
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Hello Mr Smith,

 

Please see the attached letter in relation to your request.

 

Kind regards

 

FOI Contact Officer  | General Counsel Branch

Department of the Environment and Energy

a:  GPO Box 787 CANBERRA  ACT  2600

t:   02 6274 2098

e:  [1][Independent Expert Scientific Committee on Coal Seam Gas and Large Coal Mining Development request email]

 

References

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1. mailto:[Independent Expert Scientific Committee on Coal Seam Gas and Large Coal Mining Development request email]

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Locutus Sum left an annotation ()

The agency wanted money before it processed the request. The applicant did not pay the money. The request is taken to have been withdrawn by the applicant --- Deemed withdrawal

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Anyone:
Independent Expert Scientific Committee on Coal Seam Gas and Large Coal Mining Development only: