Discover more about GISERA research projects and findings through our videos and animations.

GISERA has produced a range of videos and animations that provides information on project updates, research findings and visual explainers about topics such as the process of coal seam gas and shale gas extraction and the potential social and environmental impacts.

Unearthing conventional gas

[Music plays and CSIRO logo and text appears on a blue screen: Unearthing conventional gas, What is conventional gas, how is it extracted and what are some of the challenges involved?]

[Image changes to show a rotating 3D cross-section block of earth showing the different strata layers joined by a line to hexagons showing sea creatures and rocks on the left and text appears: Plant and animal matter such as plankton]

Narrator: Natural gas is mainly methane formed over millions of years from the breakdown of organic matter in rocks like shales and coals.

[Camera zooms in on the strata layers of the cross-section and arrows appear moving towards the top of the screen and then an inset image appears of rock and text appears beneath: Impermeable rock]

Over time gas can migrate up from the source rocks, either reaching the surface or becoming trapped under a layer of impermeable rock.

[Camera zooms out on the cross-section and the word “Sandstone” appears on one of the layers and then a square of permeable rock and text appears on the right of the cross-section: Conventional Gas Resource]

Conventional gas resources are trapped within layers of permeable rock like sandstone which allows liquid and gas to flow through making it possible to extract with conventional techniques.

[Image shows “Coal” and “Shale” labelled on the cross-section, and a square of less permeable rock and text appears on the right: Unconventional Gas Resource]

Unconventional gas resources are trapped within less permeable rocks such as shale or coal which need techniques like hydraulic fracturing or dewatering to extract the gas.

[Camera zooms in on the cross-section, and a line appears down the side through the layers and then the camera zooms in on the line to show the steel casing]

Once a gas reservoir is targeted and the well drilled, steel casing is cemented in place sealing the well bore from the surrounding environment.

[Image shows the gas moving to the surface of the cross-section and then a line appears joining the cross-section to a processing plant and then to a factory on the right]

Gas then flows to the surface where it’s collected and processed. Additional wells may be drilled to check the resource and increase production.

[Camera zooms in on the cross-section and shows a drilling site on the surface and then an inset swimming pool appears on the screen]

Conventional gas drilling uses around one to two megalitres of water, less than an Olympic sized swimming pool, depending on the well depth, diameter and geological conditions.

[Camera zooms in on the drilling area and then the image shows the drilling rig being removed and the top of the steel casing being capped with cement]

After all viable gas reserves are extracted wells are plugged with cement and capped to stop gas escaping.

[Camera zooms out on the cross-section again and a map of Australia appears on the right with a gold badge and a tick list covering part of it]

Australia’s gas extraction regulations are world leading and potential impacts must be managed appropriately.

[Camera zooms in on the cross-section and then the image shows a truck backing into the drilling area and then liquid spilling out of the back of the truck and seeping into the cross-section]

Some people are concerned about potential environment impacts of the industry, like possible surface and groundwater contamination from accidental surface spills or leaks of drilling fluids, waste water and by products. These could impact water for drinking or farming.

[Camera zooms out on the cross-section and it rotates in an anticlockwise direction]

Others are concerned about potential impacts of the industry’s greenhouse gas footprint and the changes to agricultural landscapes. As fewer gas wells are needed to extract conventional gas, than coal seam gas, a smaller surface area is disturbed.

[Camera zooms out and the cross-section disappears and then text appears: Research to inform decisions, Visit the CSIRO and GISERA websites for more information and latest research, www.csiro.au, gisera.csiro.au]

CSIRO’s research aims to better understand these impacts and ensure socially and environmentally responsible development.

[Music plays and the CSIRO logo and text appears: CSIRO, Big ideas start here]

Unearthing conventional gas

Investigating the potential health impacts of coal seam gas

[The CSIRO, Australia Pacific LNG, QGC, Origin, Santos, NSW Government and Australian Government Department of Industry, Innovation and Science logos and text appears: GISERA, Gas Industry Social and Environmental Research Alliance, www.gisera.csiro.au]

[Music plays and text appears on a green screen: Research update, Investigating the potential health impacts of coal seam gas activities, September 2018]

[Image changes to show the CSG site in amongst dry grassland and then the image changes to show Cameron Huddlestone-Holmes talking to the camera and text appears: Cameron Huddlestone-Holmes, Senior Research Scientist, CSIRO]

Cameron Huddlestone-Holmes: This project is the first comprehensive study of the potential health impacts of coal seam gas activities in Australia.

[Images move through of aerial views of the site, water flowing through in an area bounded by cement and then Sharon Grant talking to the camera and text appears: Sharon Grant, Queensland Alliance for Environmental Health Sciences, The University of Queensland]

Sharon Grant: So, what we’re trying to ascertain is whether there are any human health impact from chemical and physical hazards related to coal seam gas activities.

[Image changes to show Andrea Walton talking to the camera and then the image changes to show a group of people wearing high-vis standing at the back of a ute and talking and text appears: Andrea Walton, Social Scientist, CSIRO]

Andrea Walton: We’ve got three sort of committees that we’re going to have to sort of help that process.

[Camera zooms in on some of the people wearing high-vis clothing and then the image changes to show the group at the CSG site and the camera zooms in on them]

We’ve got one committee which is a local stakeholder reference group. We’re also having a technical reference group and then we’re going to have what we call an oversight committee.

[Image changes to show Andrea talking to the camera]

So, this is going to be a really important study for Australian unconventional gas.

[Images flash through of some of the equipment on the CSG site, Sharon talking to the camera, a view of the CSG gas site, a cow standing in front of the site, and Sharon talking to the camera again]

Sharon Grant: Once we’ve established that we will go into an identification phase where we try to look for complete exposure pathways, where a chemical or a physical hazard might be emitted from the activities as industry and actually move through the environment and impact a person.

[Image changes to show a female operating a touch screen in a monitoring station and then the image changes to show the female face as she looks up and then her hand operating the touch screen]

So, that might involve putting out some monitors, some monitoring devices, some samplers, to collect more information.

[Image changes to show Sharon talking to the camera again]

There may be modelling involved.
[Images move through of Andrea talking to the camera, the CSG gas site amongst grassland, a close-up view of a male working on the site, and cattle moving around the site and text appears: Andrea Walton, Social Scientist, CSIRO]

Andrea Walton: We want to produce a project that is not only scientifically robust and of very high quality, but we want it to be really trusted.

[Image changes to show a female looking at a computer screen inside a monitoring station and then the image changes to show Camera Huddlestone-Holmes talking and text appears: Cameron Huddlestone-Holmes, Senior Research Scientist, CSIRO]

Cameron Huddlestone-Holmes: The outcomes of this research will help to inform Government and industry about how they can carry out their activities to minimise any potential health impacts should there be any.

[Images move through of an aerial view looking down on the CSG site, workers wearing hi-vis in conversation, the CSG site, a fenced off body of water, tanks on the site, and Sharon talking again]

Sharon Grant: At every point in the project we can actually go back to the committees and say, “This is what we’ve found”, “This is what we’re proposing to do next” if we want to shine light on this process and bring our stakeholders along with us on this journey to understand some of the answers that people are looking for.
.
[Music plays and the CSIRO, Australia Pacific LNG, QGC, Origin, Santos, NSW Government and Australian Government Department of Industry, Innovation and Science logos and text appears: GISERA, Gas Industry Social and Environmental Research Alliance, www.gisera.csiro.au]

Investigating the potential health impacts of CSG

Investigating the impacts of coal seam gas infrastructure on animals and pastures

[The CSIRO, Australia Pacific LNG, QGC, Origin, Santos, NSW Government and Australian Government Department of Industry, Innovation and Science logos and text appears: GISERA, Gas Industry Social and Environmental Research Alliance, www.gisera.csiro.au]

[Music plays and text appears on a green screen: Inside the herd, Investigating the impacts of coal seam gas infrastructure, traffic and dust on animals and pastures, September 2018]

[Image changes to show the CSG site in amongst dry grassland and then the image changes to show cattle walking through the grassland and then gathering near the CSG site]

Neil Huth: The Inside the Herd Project is looking at the potential impacts of coal seam gas development on the soils, pastures and livestock in grazing systems.

[Image changes to show the cattle walking through the grassland in front of a row of trees and then the image changes to show a cream coloured cow in front of the CSG site]

Our previous research had been undertaken mostly on cropping lands and looking at rural communities.

[Image changes to show Neil Huth talking to the camera and text appears: Neil Huth, Senior Research Scientist, CSIRO]

This project is actually just targeting grazing systems and issues that are particular to these.

[Image changes to show grassland in the foreground and the CSG site in the background and then the image changes to show cattle under trees, and then cattle gathered near the CSG site]

We’re doing the research because farmers had highlighted to us previously the impacts of dust, light and noise on various parts of the farm business. S

[Images move through of a cow looking at the camera, Neil talking to the camera, two rotating 3-D landscape models, an aerial 3-D model of the landscape, and a livestock monitoring model]

o, what we have done is used a range of technologies from soil studies to building 3-D models of the landscape to look at water and erosion processes and individual monitoring of livestock using GPS systems to understand how they interact with CSG infrastructure.

[Image changes to show Neil talking to the camera]

We found the impacts that were probably not what we were expecting.

[Image changes to show cattle around the CSG site, and then the image changes to show a cream coloured cow in the foreground and the CSG site in the background]

For example, livestock were found to spend more time per hectare within the CSG footprint than they did on neighbouring open pasture.

[Image changes to show Neil talking to the camera]

It is hoped that the findings from this research will actually help farmers to understand some of the issues that they’re facing.

[Images move through of Neil seated at a desk in front of two screens having a conversation with another male, the male in the foreground listening while Neil talks, and Neil talking to the camera]

By having one on one discussions with graziers we will get this information in the hands of people who need this to better improve the design of CSG infrastructure in grazing systems.

[Music plays and the CSIRO, Australia Pacific LNG, QGC, Origin, Santos, NSW Government and Australian Government Department of Industry, Innovation and Science logos and text appears: GISERA, Gas Industry Social and Environmental Research Alliance, www.gisera.csiro.au]

Investigating the impacts of csg infrastructure on animals and pastures

Update on air quality assessment in the Surat Basin

[The CSIRO, Australia Pacific LNG, QGC, Origin, Santos, NSW Government and Australian Government Department of Industry, Innovation and Science logos and text appears: GISERA, Gas Industry Social and Environmental Research Alliance, www.gisera.csiro.au]

[Music plays and text appears on a green screen: Research Update, Assessing the air quality in the Surat Basin, September 2018]

[Image changes to show Sarah Lawson walking towards the air quality station and then the image changes to show an aerial view of the CSG site and the camera pans over the site]

Sarah Lawson: This project is the most comprehensive assessment of air quality in a coal seam gas region in Australia to date.

[Image changes to show Sarah Lawson talking to the camera and text appears: Sarah Lawson, Senior Research Scientist, CSIRO]

The purpose of the study was to compare pollution levels with air quality objectives and to make an overall assessment of air quality in the region.

[Images move through of Sarah looking at data on a screen inside the station, a profile view of Sarah’s face, her hands on the keyboard and Sarah looking at the data on a screen again]

We made continuous measurements of pollutants via five ambient air monitoring sites as well as measurements via ten passive gas sites.

[Image changes to show Sarah standing in a paddock and talking to the camera]

Volatile organic compound levels were generally very low and typical of other rural areas in Australia.

[Image changes to show vehicles and pedestrians moving around in the main streets of Chinchilla and then the image changes to show Sarah talking to the camera with a paddock in the background]

We found the highest levels of benzene, toluene and xylene actually in the Chinchilla township and this was attributed to emissions from vehicle exhaust and from other sources within the town.

[Image changes to show grass waving in the wind and the image sharpens gradually to show the CSG site in the background]

Particle levels were generally well below air quality objectives.

[Images move through of Sarah inside the air quality monitoring station working a touch screen, the touch screen she is working on, and data on various screens]

However, there were a few occasions when the particle levels did exceed the 24-hour average air quality objectives.

[Images move through of Sarah talking, a bushfire scene, a car driving along a dusty road, an aerial view of a car on a dirt track, dust blowing behind a tractor, and an aerial view of the CSG site]

Where this occurred, we found that the sources of the particles were typical of rural areas and generally came from bushfire smoke, wind blown dust, vehicles travelling on unsealed roads, particles from agriculture and CSG development and operational activity.

[Image changes to show Sarah working on the touch screen inside the air quality monitoring station and then the image changes to show Sarah talking to the camera]

The CSIRO Air Quality Modelling Study will be the final output for this project.

[Image changes to show data from the study scrolling through on the screen and then the image changes to show Sarah talking to the camera with a dry paddock in the background]

So, the data from this study can be used by current and future studies such as the Gisera Health Study and the Impacts of Hydraulic Fracturing Study.

[Image changes to show Sarah’s hand operating the touch screen and then the image changes to show a profile view of Sarah looking up at the screen]

The data can also be used by government to inform future policy decisions.

[Image changes to show Sarah talking to the camera with a dry paddock in the background]

For community, this project provides really important information about the sources and types of pollutants in a coal-seam gas region in Australia for the first time.

[Music plays and the CSIRO, Australia Pacific LNG, QGC, Origin, Santos, NSW Government and Australian Government Department of Industry, Innovation and Science logos and text appears: GISERA, Gas Industry Social and Environmental Research Alliance, www.gisera.csiro.au]

Update on air quality assessment in the Surat Basin

About GISERA

[Music plays and CSIRO logo and text appears: GISERA, Gas Industry Social and Environmental Research Alliance]

[Images move through of a group of buildings on the GISERA site, various shrubs and a ute and two caravans on the site and the camera pans around the site]

[Image changes to show Damian Barrett talking to the camera and text appears: Damian Barrett, Director, GISERA]

Damian Barrett: GISERA is the Gas Industry Social and Environmental Research Alliance set up by CSIRO to undertake independent and world class research associated with the gas industry’s operation in regions of Australia.

[Images move through of a male working at a desk with four computer screens set up, a male and a female outside on the site and the male and female working inside with a gas canister]

GISERA is a collaboration between the Commonwealth Government, State Governments, the industry and CSIRO.

[Image changes to show an aerial view of the GISERA site with lots of trucks and equipment]

GISERA undertakes public interest research. It’s research on the issues that are of concern to those people who are living in gas development regions throughout Australia.

[Images move through of a male working with a piece of equipment, writing in a notebook, looking at a control panel and a close-up view of the piece of equipment]

Those communities want more information about the potential impacts and possibly even the benefits of the gas industry operating in their backyard.

[Images move through of a male pressing buttons on a control panel, a view of a series of pipes and stainless steel receptacles, and a male pouring vapour into a stainless steel receptacle]

GISERA contributes world class, high quality research, that is independent.

[Image changes to show a male unscrewing something and then the image changes to show different views of the site and the camera pans around the site as text appears: Greenhouse emissions, Agriculture, Water Resources, Socioeconomic Effects, Biodiversity, Marine Impacts]

We focus on a wide range of socio economic and environmental research, ranging from greenhouse gas fugitive emissions issues, potential impacts on agriculture and water resources, socio economic impacts and benefits to communities, possible impacts on biodiversity and even we do research on marine impacts, for example on turtles and dugongs.

[Image changes to show Damian Barrett talking to the camera]

CSIRO, through GISERA is trying to achieve high quality independent research that can be used for better decision making. It can be used for better policy development and can be used by the community to better understand the operation of the gas industry in their region.

[Images move through of a blurry rear view of people walking past the camera]

GISERA ensures CSIRO independence in the research that it undertakes by utilising a community dominated committee that assigns funds to projects.
[Images move through of pages on the CSIRO GISERA site on the computer featuring the research being done and the camera scrolls down the webpages showing photos and information]

Those projects are determined by the community around issues that they’re concerned about.
CSIRO’s research under GISERA is 100% transparent.

[Image changes to show a car and two vans on the GISERA site and the camera pans around in a clockwise direction]

All the research that we do is published on the CSIRO GISERA website so that everyone in the community can investigate, inspect, criticise, question and understand the work that we do in CSIRO.

[Music plays and the images flash through of the CSIRO logo on a piece of equipment on the site, two people approaching the equipment, two males in conversation and a male looking at a control panel]

CSIRO, through GISERA is the only entity in Australia that’s bringing the significant scientific resources to bear on the concerns and issues of those people who are living in gas development regions.

[Music plays and the image changes to show a male and female looking at gas canisters and then the camera zooms in on the female as she turns to look at the camera]

[CSIRO and sponsor logos and text appears: GISERA, Gas Industry Social and Environmental Research Alliance, gisera.csiro.au]

Overview video about GISERA

Air, water and soil impacts of hydraulic fracturing of CSG wells

[Music plays and a light bulb swinging back and forth appears on the screen and the CSIRO logo and text appears: GISERA, Gas Industry Social and Environmental Research Alliance]

[Image changes to show a gas burner on a stove and text appears: Research Update, Air, water and soil impacts of hydraulic fracturing of CSG wells, March 2018]

[Images flash through of a rear view of three males working on computers, an aerial view looking down on a city at night, a glass being put under a machine, a gas heater and water boiling in a pot]

Narrator: Coal seam gas is a form of natural gas which has been powering Australian households since it was first produced in Queensland in 1997.

[Image changes to show a 3-D square model of a slice of earth rotating in a clockwise direction and the coal seam appears in the model in blue and text appears: Coal Seam]

Coal seam gas is mainly methane found within coal deposits trapped underground by water pressure.

[Camera zooms in on the model and a line appears showing a drilling line from the surface to the coal seam and measurements appear on the model: Surface, – 300m and -100 m]

It is extracted through wells drilled between 300 and 1,000 metres deep, through rock layers to the coal seam.

[Image changes to show an aerial view of the drilling site and the camera pans over the area in a clockwise direction]

If water and gas don’t flow freely, hydraulic fracturing, also known as fracking may be used to increase the rate of flow.

[Image changes to show a close-up view of the 3-D model showing water and sand particles moving down the drilling line to the coal seam and text appears: Hydraulic fracturing]

Hydraulic fracturing involves perforating the well casing at different levels to gain access to the coal.

[Camera zooms in on the drilling line to show fractures opening up into the coal seam areas]

Water containing sand and chemical additives is pumped under high pressure down the well, opening up existing fractures and creating new ones.

[Image shows liquid moving down the drilling line and into the coal seams and a droplet and text appears: 1% chemical additives, 99% water & proppant]

The sand keeps the cracks open, allowing the gas to flow to the well and up to the surface.

[Image changes to show an aerial view looking down on the drilling site and the camera pans in a clockwise direction and then the camera zooms in on two males getting out of a ute at the site]

The potential health and environmental impacts of using hydraulic fracturing to stimulate gas production from wells are issues of community concern.

[Image changes to show two males in hi-vis walking towards the camera on the site and then the image changes to show a close-up view of one of the males working on a piece of equipment]

To answer questions around the safety of hydraulic fracturing processes for the environment and people’s health, CSIRO is undertaking research through its Gas Industry Social and Environmental Research Alliance.

[Camera zooms out to show the male working on the equipment on the site and then the camera zooms in on his face as he looks at a control panel on the equipment]

Researchers have spent months in the field investigating the air, soil and water impacts of hydraulic fracturing of coal seam gas production wells in the Surat Basin, Queensland.

[Image changes to show the male writing data onto a notepad]

They want to better understand the impacts of hydraulic fracturing and provide information to Government, industry and the community.

[Image changes to show Erin Dunne talking to the camera and text appears: Erin Dunne, Research Scientist]

Erin Dunne: We’ve got our air monitoring station set up here, right next to a well that underwent hydraulic fracturing just a week or so ago and we’ve been here since July. So, we’ve been here before they fractured and we’ll be here for a while after so that we can measure the air quality before, during and after fracturing to quantify the enhancements that might happen during that process.

[Image changes to show Josh King and a female both wearing hi-vis and looking at a water sample in a plastic sample bottle]

CSIRO land and water scientists are collecting and analysing water and soil samples to determine the concentration of potential contaminants.

[Camera zooms in on Josh King talking to the camera and text appears: Josh King, Research Technician]

Josh King: So, our study aims to be a comprehensive investigation into some of the environmental impacts of hydraulic fracturing.

[Image changes to show the female holding a plastic bottle and then the camera zooms in on the bottle’s label: GW3 19/10/17]

So, we’re going to be taking over 100 water samples and up to 50 soil samples and analysing for a whole range of potential contaminants.

[Image changes to show Josh King talking to the camera]

We will be looking at the chemical composition of the material that goes down the well and we’ll also be looking at the chemical composition of what comes back up the well, some of those naturally occurring things that will come back up the well.

[Image changes to show Simon Apte standing inside an office and talking to the camera and text appears: Simon Apte, Senior Research Scientist]

Simon Apte: At CSIRO, we have a range of highly sensitive chemical instruments that we can use to measure the concentrations of chemicals in environmental samples to very, very low concentrations

[Image changes to show a machine dipping a nozzle into specimen bottles and then the camera zooms in on the specimen bottles in a tray]

and in this project we’re using this capability to measure over 150 potential contaminants in both waters and soil samples, collected from regions in Central Queensland who have been subjected to hydraulic fracturing operations.

[Image changes to show Rai Kookana and another male looking at soil samples on a wall display and then the camera zooms in on Rai talking and explaining something to the other male]

Narrator: To simulate a spill in the environment, a laboratory scenario study will expose soil samples representative of the different soil types from across the region to hydraulic fracturing fluids and flow back waters. The degradation and stability of the added contaminants over time will then be measured.

[Image changes to show Rai Kookana talking to the camera and text appears: Rai Kookana, Senior Research Scientist]

Rai Kookana: So, we are trying to answer three questions through this study. Firstly, whether the chemicals entering the soil through a spill, whether they break down or not. Secondly, if the spill happens to be fairly large and there’s a lot of water goes into the soil, whether these chemicals will continue to move through the soil to the ground water or not. But, most importantly we want to establish whether there would be any adverse impact on the health of the soil.

[Image changes to show an aerial view looking down on the drilling site and the camera pans in a clockwise direction]

Narrator: This project presents an important opportunity to generate a comprehensive, publicly available account of the potential for environmental impacts from coal seam gas, including access to production wells during an extended hydraulic fracturing programme.

[Images move through of a gas field site, a person walking on the site, a monitoring station and two employees moving around a ute at the monitoring station]

Gas field operator, Origin Energy, are allowing unrestricted access where safe to air, surface water, ground water and soil in the vicinity of wells being hydraulically fractured to establish instruments, collect samples and for ongoing monitoring.

[Image changes to show Simon Apte talking to the camera]

Simon Apte: This is the first study of its kind in Australia and possibly in the world, to look in detail at the impacts of chemicals both in water and soils and their effects on living organisms.

[Image changes to show a female working operating a machine working on sample bottles and then the image changes to show data on a computer screen]

Narrator: The project’s independence is managed through a panel of external independent scientists which will review the study results and outcomes.

[Image changes to show Erin Dunne standing at a monitoring site and talking to the camera]

Erin Dunne: I think the information in this study will be really useful to local communities to understand the likely impacts on air quality of hydraulic fracturing operations that happen around their area. I think it’s useful for governments to inform future development and I think it’s really important for industry to improve practice.

[Image changes to show an aerial view looking down on a drilling site and the camera pans in a clockwise direction]

Narrator: Results of the research are expected at the end of 2018.

[CSIRO, Australia Pacific LNG, QGC, Origin, Santos, NSW Government and Australian Government Department of Industry, Innovation and Science logos and text appears: GISERA, Gas Industry Social and Environmental Research Alliance, Reports and data will be available on the GISERA website at www.gisera.csiro.au]

Reports and data will be available on the Gisera website at gisera.csiro.au.

[Music plays and then the CSIRO logo and text appears: Australia’s innovation catalyst]

Investigating air, water and soil impacts of hydraulic fracturing of CSG wells

Job forecast and lessons learned

[Music plays and CSIRO logo and text appears: GISERA Gas Industry Social and Environmental Research Alliance]

[Text moves to the left and new text appears: Looking to the future]

[Text splits and moves towards the top and bottom of the screen and a map of Australia appears in the centre and the camera zooms in on the Surat Basin on the map and text appears beneath inside an arrow pointing to the right: 2010, 2015 Construction, Operations]

Narrator: The Surat Basin Coal Seam Gas Construction phase of 2010 to 2015 brought rapid changes and the Operations phase continues to be dynamic. To benefit from likely economic effects, local businesses need to be ready and adaptable to change.

[Image shows the screen moving to the left and the arrow continuing to the right and outline images of employees and text appears: 2025, 2030]

Using projected gas industry employment figures, CSIRO has forecast trends for indirect jobs related to the coal seam gas industry for the next 20 years.

[Image shows the screen continuing to move to the left and the arrow continuing to the right and text and a line graph appears above the arrow: Total Indirect Employment (Excluding FIFO and DIDO workers)]

[Text appears inside the arrow: 2014, 2024, 2034]

Findings show indirect employment for the region is forecast to increase from 2014 to 2024 but decrease from 2024 to 2034

[Image shows red highlights on the line graph and labels appear at the end of the lines: Scenario 2, Scenario 1, Business as Usual, Scenario 3]

with mini booms and slowdowns in between.

[Image shows a broken line appearing at the base of the line graph and text appears: 2006 Level]

In 2034, indirect employment is forecast to be lower than 2014, however still higher than 2006.

[Image changes and encircled pictures appear of a front-end loader, weather symbols, a trumpet and a drink cup, outline people and a hand below a cog]

Business sectors projected to benefit are construction, utilities, other services, for example mechanics, arts and recreation and administrative and support services.

[CSIRO logo appears in the centre of the encircled pictures and then the logo changes to show a paper displaying tick boxes]

CSIRO has identified ten lessons small to medium enterprises learned from the coal seam gas construction boom

[Image shows waves moving up from the bottom of the screen and the five encircled pictures floating on the waves and then a lighthouse emitting a light beam appears on the right-hand side of the screen]

that can assist businesses ride future waves of upturns and downturns.

[Image changes to show animation outline clients lining up on the left of a business labelled “Alex’s”]

Look after core customers.

[Image shows a second line of clients appearing on the left of the business and a van labelled “Alex’s” appearing from the right-hand side of the screen]

Boom times can bring new clients and more costs.

[Dollar symbols appear above the roof of the business and a joint thought bubble appears above the heads of the clients displaying a thumbs-up symbol]

Keeping prices steady and maintaining services helps retain your customer base.

[Image changes to show an outline animation male with a light bulb above his head and then lines appear connecting the outline animation male to a group of buildings, a bank, people and a dollar graph]

Stay connected. Source knowledge from Industry Bodies, Regional Economic Development Groups, Chambers of Commerce and Government Programmes.

[Image changes to show four buildings all connected by chain links to a line of clients and coin stacks, note stacks, and boxes circulate around the chain links connecting the buildings]

Understand the industry and supply chain.

[Image changes to show an outline building with a line of people on the left-hand side below a calendar symbol and then the image shows note stacks emitting from the building to the line of people]

If payment takes 45 days, plan how to pay your staff. Change happens fast.

[Image shows two people disappearing from the line]

Prepare to downsize in quieter times.

[Image changes to show an animation image of a male behind a desk talking on the phone to a female in front of the desk and the image shows a light bulb appearing above the male’s head]

Get advice from Business Consultants to plan and help make tough decisions.

[Image changes to show a handshake and then the image changes to show a male looking down at the work “RISK” and then dollar coins being put into a piggy bank appear in the foreground]

Understand contracts and do risk analysis to protect revenues and manage cash flow.

[Image changes to show a building, a truck, computer monitors and a drill press in a line and the image shows coins emitting from the base of them]

Don’t overcapitalise. Paying for big assets post boom can be hard.

[Image changes to show two horizontal green circles with outline images of two males and two females inside and then the circles move to stack on top of each other]

Broaden your customer base by diversifying into new markets unrelated to gas.

[Image changes to show an outline of a male in a gold suit standing on a podium while a line of people listen and then a magnifying glass appears over the male on the podium]

Beware of people talking up opportunities.

[Camera zooms out and a web page appears on the right-hand side of the screen]

Seek reliable information.

[Image changes to show an animation image of a male at a desk clutching his head and then hands appear around him holding a coffee cup, a clock, a stack of papers, a mobile phone, a calendar and some letters]

Booms bring expansion but also uncertainty. Weigh up the benefits with potential work life stress

[Image changes and the camera zooms in on certificates of Occupational Health & Safety, Quality Assurance, Advanced Processes and Advanced Systems and then camera zooms in again to show animation images of a male and a female wearing cloaks and a male and female wearing business suits]

and look for business building opportunities with your increased skills and capacity.

[Music plays and CSIRO logo and text appears: GISERA Gas Industry Social and Environmental Research Alliance]

[Sponsors logos and text appears: Download the fact sheet to learn more about employment forecasts for the Surat Basin 2014 to 2034 and implications for SMEs, Gisera.org.au]

Looking to the future: Job forecasts for the Surat Basin, 2014-2034

Assessing air quality in the Surat Basin

[Music plays and CSIRO and GISERA logos and text appears: Gas Industry Social & Environmental Research Alliance]

[Text appears: Assessing the air quality in the Surat Basin]

[Image appears of Sarah Lawson getting out of a car and walking towards the Ambient Air Quality Station and then the camera zooms out and shows an aerial view of Sarah Lawson walking around the Ambient Air Quality Station]

Sarah Lawson: All human activity has an impact on the atmosphere and it can be difficult to figure out which source is actually contributing to the air pollution. This project is looking at ambient air quality in the Surat Basin.

[Camera zooms in on Sarah Lawson entering the Ambient Air Quality Station]

An Ambient Air Quality Station is really a building, which contains a whole lot of really specialised ambient air monitoring equipment.

[Image changes to show the inlet and then the image changes to show a diagram of air moving through the inlet and then the image changes to show Sarah Lawson taking notes and operating a touch computer screen]

So we have an inlet and the air is drawn down the inlet via a pump and then each of the specialised instruments takes a little bit of that air, analyses it for the selected pollutant

[Camera zooms in on Sarah Lawson’s face and then the camera zooms out to show Sarah Lawson operating a computer and then the camera zooms in on the Hourly Air Quality data information page on the computer screen]

and then provides the reading or the pollutant concentrations to the computer where it’s then streamed to the E.P.A. website.

[Image changes to show Sarah Lawson talking to the camera and text appears: Sarah Lawson, Senior Research Scientist, CSIRO Oceans and Atmosphere]

So we’re going to use an Air Quality Model in this project to try to separate out the contribution of different sources to the air pollution that we observe.

[Image changes to show air swirling around a map of Australia with text Sea salt, Smoke, Dust and Biogenic pinpointed]

So what we can do in the model is include all sources of pollution, so the C.S.G. industry, the bushfires and the cars and we do a model run

[Image shows air swirling around the map of Australia minus the pinpointed text]

and then we can actually turn off the C.S.G. industry emissions in the second model run and then look for the difference between the two runs

[Image changes to show Sarah Lawson talking to the camera and then the image changes to show the Ambient Air Quality Station]

and in this way we can try to tease out what is the contribution of the C.S.G. industry to the pollution that we observe

[Image shows Sarah Lawson working inside the Ambient Air Quality Station and then the camera zooms in on Sarah Lawson talking to the camera]

and then we can compare the levels of air pollutants that we find to other areas in Queensland to give us an idea about how this region compares and we can also compare the levels of pollutants that we find to the Government’s Air Quality Goals.

[Image changes to show Sarah Lawson working inside the Ambient Air Quality Station and then the image changes to show an outside view of the Station]

The Government will use the data to inform future policy development and industry will use the data to improve their practices.

[Image changes to show Sarah Lawson talking to the camera]

I think the really exciting thing about this project is that we’ll actually be making the data from the Air Quality Network available to the community, to Government and to industry in near real-time.

[Images flash through of different screens displaying Hourly Air Quality data and then the image changes to show Sarah Lawson talking to the camera]

So what that means for the community is that they can see in a glance what the air quality is like outside their window at a given time and how it compares to the rest of Queensland

[Image changes to show Sarah Lawson working inside the Ambient Air Quality Station and then the image changes to show Sarah Lawson talking to the camera]

and I think this is a really important part of the project. It provides complete transparency to the community.

[Music plays and CSIRO and GISERA logos and text appears: Gas Industry Social & Environmental Research Alliance]

[Sponsors logos and text appears: www.gisera.org.au]

Assessing air quality in the Surat Basin

Telling the story

[Music plays and CSIRO and GISERA logos and text appears: Gas Industry Social & Environmental Research Alliance]

[Text appears: Telling the Story, Research update]

[Image appears of Neil Huth talking to the camera and then images flash through of the entrance of the FarmFest and people walking in to the FarmFest and text appears: Neil Huth, Team Leader, CSIRO Agriculture]

Neil Huth: CSIRO is undertaking a range of research into the social and environmental impacts of C.S.G. Development and that’s why we’re at FarmFest today to share our results with people.

[Music plays and images flash through of people walking around the FarmFest looking at tractors and the GISERA stand]

Our particular projects have looked at a broad range of topics including the impacts of C.S.G. on soil, water, farm businesses and farm families.

[Image changes to show Andrea Walton talking to a male and then the camera zooms in on the paper she is holding and then the camera pans over the male’s face and then Andrea Walton’s face]

Andrea Walton: Our project is called Community Wellbeing and Responding to Change where we’re looking at the impacts on communities from Coal Seam Gas.

[Image changes to show Andrea Walton at the FarmFest and text appears: Andrea Walton, Research Scientist, CSIRO Land and Water]

We’ve actually been monitoring these impacts over time since 2012 when we first started.

[Image changes to show a computer screen display and then images flash through of Neil Huth and a male looking at the computer screens, Andrea Walton talking to a male and two males talking together in front of the GISERA stand]

Things the communities really want to understand is how does the Coal Seam Gas Development affect the life and quality of life in their communities.

[Images move through of Andrea Walton and a male talking, Andrea Walton at the FarmFest talking to the camera, brochures on the GISERA stand and Andrea Walton talking to the camera]

So from that we’ve been able to identify the areas that are really important and contribute to the well-being of the community and then we relay those findings on to policy makers at all levels of Government and to industry and then of course back to the community themselves.

[Image changes to show two males and Neil Huth looking at the computer screen displays in the GISERA stand]

Neil Huth: My particular project is looking at the impacts of Coal Seam Gas on agriculture.

[Image changes to show Neil Huth talking to the camera]

Our research has shown that there are three things that are important.

[Images move through of Andrea Walton talking to a male and Neil Huth and a male looking at the computer screen display in the GISERA stand]

The first thing is that they have a plan.

[The camera pans around in an anticlockwise direction and then the image shows Neil Huth pointing to the computer screen]

This plan will need to include the goals for you and your farm, your strengths, your weaknesses and when you would need to get advice.

[Images move through of Andrea Walton talking to a male and two males talking in front of the GISERA stand]

The second thing is to know how you’ll communicate that plan.

[Images move through of Andrea Walton talking to a male and Neil Huth talking to a male]

Our research has shown that farmers and gas companies often communicate in very different ways.

[Image changes to show Neil Huth talking to the camera at the FarmFest and then the image changes to show Neil Huth and a male looking at computer screen displays]

The third thing is to design a system that will work for you.

[The camera pans in a clockwise direction and then the camera zooms in on Neil Huth and the male]

To assist farmers here we have research on issues such as the impacts of C.S.G. on farm machinery and water flows.

[Images move through of maps displayed on computer screens]

For example, we have generated highly detailed water flow maps that help farmers put the right thing in the right place.

[Images move through of Andrea Walton talking to two males and Andrea Walton talking to the camera at the FarmFest]

Andrea Walton: By continuing the research over time, we can identify changes that have occurred as the industry changes.

[Image changes to show a GISERA sign and then the camera zooms in on Neil Huth and a male talking and looking at computer screen displays and then the image changes to show Neil Huth talking to the camera]

Neil Huth: As a researcher, I love coming to shows like FarmFest because it gives us an opportunity to tell farmers about the research that we’ve been doing.

[Music plays and CSIRO and GISERA logos and text appears: Gas Industry Social & Environmental Research Alliance]

[Sponsors logos and text appears: www.gisera.org.au]

Sharing research findings at FarmFest 2016

Coal seam gas

[Music plays and text appears: Unearthing coal seam gas – What is coal seam gas, how is it extracted and what are some of the challenges involved?]
[Image appears of a farmland landscape on the surface of a cross section of land. Camera zooms down the cross section of land to a map of Australia and text appears: 1997 over Queensland]
Narrator: Coal seam gas has been part of Australia’s energy mix since it was first produced in Queensland in 1997, and development of the resource has been steadily increasing since then.

[A blue coal seam line appears on the rotating cross section of land and text appears: Coal seam]

Coal seam gas is mainly methane found within coal deposits trapped underground by water pressure.

[A line appears on the cross section of land moving through the rock to the coal seam and text appears: Surface, 300 m, 1000 m and Aquifer Aquitard]

To access the gas, a well is drilled – anywhere from 300 to 1000 metres deep through various layers of rock – to the coal seam.

[Camera zooms in on the well in the cross section of land and then a small block pops out of the side to show the cement and steel casing of the well]

To protect groundwater from being contaminated the well is lined with cement and steel casings.
[Camera zooms down to show water in the coal seam, text appears: Formation Water]

Water already in the coal seam is pumped out to release the trapped gas.

[Text appears: Hydraulic Fracturing and camera zooms in on well shaft to show perforations in well shaft]

If water and gas don’t flow freely, hydraulic fracturing, also known as fracking, may be used to increase the rate of flow. Hydraulic fracturing involves perforating the casing at different levels along the well, to gain access to the coal.
[Image shows water moving down the well shaft and into the coal seam. A single water drop appears and text appears: 1% chemical additives, 99% water & proppant]

Water containing chemical additives is pumped under high pressure down the well, opening up existing fractures and creating new ones.

[Camera zooms in on the coal seam to show sand in the water and then zooms out to show the well shaft and the water and sand moving up the well shaft]

Proppant, such as sand is then added to the water that flows through to the fractures. The sand keeps the cracks open allowing the gas to flow to the well and up to the surface.

[Camera zooms up the well shaft to the well head at the surface. Image shows the well head with a truck and a pumping station. Text appears: Produced Water = hydraulic fracturing fluid + formation water]

Produced water and gas are pumped to the surface, and separated at the well head.

[Camera zooms out to reveal the whole cross section of land with arrows pointing left to three hexagons showing what happens to the gas and arrows pointing right to six hexagons to show what happens to the water]
The extracted gas is processed and transported for domestic and international use. Produced water is treated to remove salts and other chemicals and then either re-used or disposed of according to state government regulations.

[Camera zooms in on the cross section of land again and shows the well. Image appears of a cube of the Aquifer and Aquitard layer: text appears: On one cube Aquifer and the other cube Aquitard . Over decades and thousands of years
A source of concern is that hydraulic fracturing fluids may leave the coal seam and enter fresh water aquifers, which are layers of porous permeable rock that allow water to flow through easily.

This risk is reduced by layers of rock with low permeability, known as aquitards, which limit water flow and can act as a barrier.

[Camera zooms back to surface of cross section of land and image shows a truck with fluid spilling from the rear]

Contamination of groundwater is more likely to occur as a result of accidental surface spills or leaks of produced water and hydraulic fracturing fluids.

[Camera zooms out to show the coal seam and the layers either side. Text appears to label the layers: Aquifer, Aquitard, Coal Seam, Aquitard, Aquifer]

Another impact is the lowering of water levels in aquifers. Removing large amounts of water from the coal seam decreases the water pressure within the rock layer containing coal deposits. Water in the aquifers can then move towards the coal seam. Just how fast and far this happens depends on the type of and connectivity between the aquifers and aquitards.

[Camera zooms up the well shaft to the surface again and then zooms in on a chimney spewing flame]

[Camera zooms out to show the cross section of land]

Other potential environmental impacts include the industry’s greenhouse gas footprint, fragmenting of local habitat, changes to agricultural landscapes and rural communities.
[Text appears: Research to inform decisions, Visit the CSIRO and GISERA websites for more information and latest research. www.csiro.au, www.gisera.org.au’]
CSIRO is conducting research to better understand the impacts of coal seam gas development and develop sound technologies and practices to ensure socially and environmentally responsible development.
[CSIRO logo and text appears: Big ideas start here, www.csiro.au]

Unearthing coal seam gas

Shale gas

[Music plays and text appears: Unearthing shale gas. What is shale gas, how is it extracted and what are some of the challenges involved?]

[Image changes to show a computer generated cross-section of land with the shale rock level labelled]

Narrator: Shale gas is mainly methane trapped within shale rock layers at depths greater than 1.500 metres.
Australia’s shale gas industry is largely in the exploration phase. This involves drilling vertical and horizontal wells and hydraulically fracturing, or fraccing, the shale rock to see if gas can be produced economically.

[Image changes to show the drilling lines appearing on the computer generate cross-section of land, with markers at both 1,500 and 3,000 metres deep]

When in the production phase, wells are drilled anywhere from 1,500 to 3,000 metres deep, through various layers of rock to access the shale.

To protect groundwater from contamination the well is lined with cement and steel casings.

[Camera zooms in on the well and shows the cement and steel casings]

Horizontal drilling is a technique used to maximise shale gas recovery and minimise surface impacts.

[Image changes to show a line appearing underground on the computer generated cross-section, labelled Horizontal Drilling]

Before gas production can start hydraulic fracturing needs to occur.

[Camera zooms in on the on the section labelled Hydraulic Fracturing]

This involves perforating along the horizontal portion of the well to gain access to the shale rock.

Water containing chemical additives is pumped under high pressure to open up existing fractures and create new ones within the shale rock.

[Image changes to show water running through the fracture. Camera zooms in on a drop of watered labelled 1 % chemical additives and 99 % water proppant]

Proppant, such as sand is then added to the water that flows through to the fractures.

[Camera zooms in on the sand moving through the water in the fracture]

The sand keeps the cracks open allowing the gas to flow to the well and up to the surface.

[Image changes to show the process being repeated and new fractures appearing]

This process is repeated several times within the horizontal portion of the well, with each fracturing stage separated by a plug. At the end of the hydraulic fracturing process the plugs are removed and production can start.

[Camera pans up the computer generated image to reveal the well head where a truck and equipment can be seen extracting the water and gas]

Shale gas and any produced water flow to the well and are pumped to the surface and separated at the well head.
Extracted gas is processed and transported for domestic and/or international use.
[Diagrams of the process appear on screen beginning at the cross-section of land where the shale is extracted, moving to a Gas compressor station (cleaning and compression), with two arrows off that box showing a Domestic use box and Export box]

The produced water is treated, then either used in future hydraulic fracturing jobs, or disposed of in accordance to state government regulations.

[Diagrams of the process appear on screen beginning at the cross-section of land, moving to a Water treatment box and then to a Re-use or disposal in accordance to state government regulations box]

A source of concern is the amount of water used in the hydraulic fracturing process.

[Image changes back to show the computer generated cross-section of land with text: 20 Megalitres – eight Olympic pools appear on top of the text]

An average of 20 mega litres of water can be used per well, which would fill about eight average Olympic sized swimming pools.

Another possible impact is groundwater contamination from accidental surface spills or leaks of produced water and hydraulic fracturing fluids.

[Image changes to show the truck reversing and a spill can be seen coming from under the truck]

Other potential environmental impacts include the industry’s greenhouse gas footprint, fragmenting of local habitat and changes to rural communities.

[Camera pans out on the computer generated cross-section of land]

CSIRO is conducting research to better understand the impacts of shale gas development and develop sound technologies and practices to ensure socially and environmentally responsible development.

[Text appears: Research to inform decisions. Visit the CSIRO and GISERA websites for more information and latest research. www.csiro.au, www.gisera.org.au]

[Music plays and CSIRO logo appears with text: Big ideas start here www.csiro.au]

Unearthing shale gas

Contact us

Have a question? Contact us using our contact form or check out our frequent enquiries.

Contact details
Enquiry*