A panel of experts discussing the technique, economics and the public relations surrounding hydraulic fracturing attracted a crowd of over 255 guests at the October lunch.
Panellists Diana Hoff, Vice President, Technical & Engineering from Santos, discussed the company’s experience with the method in the Cooper Basin and other operations; Susan Jeanes, Chief Executive Officer of the Australian Geothermal Energy Association stressed the importance and reliance on fracture stimulation for the State’s geothermal industry; while Verity Edwards, Editor of Weekend Professional, The Australian, provided insight into why the method has negative connotations amongst the general public.
“Opinions of some industry companies aren’t being heard, they should get their voice out to balance the negative groups,” Ms Edwards said, mentioning the difficulty of the media in accessing the right spokespeople to respond to inaccurate claims.
Ms Hoff described the “long track record” of Santos “doing things responsibly”, particularly in the Cooper Basin where the company has used hydraulic fracturing since the 1970s.
“Communities that are used to activities trust us… Stakeholder and community engagement is an important part of our industry,” she said.
“We have to make sure as an industry we deliver wells with integrity every day.”
South Australia’s emerging geothermal industry relies on the technique to extract heat from hot rocks, with Ms Jeanes saying:
“I doubt very much that there would be a geothermal industry in Australia without fraccing,” she said.
She also explained that the main ingredient in fraccing fluid is also water which is the main ingredient in hydraulic fracturing.
SACOME thanks our annual sponsors and event sponsor, Minotaur Exploration.