7News exclusive: Campbelltown gas plant pollution fears

A 7News investigation has revealed a coal seam gas plant in outer Sydney has pumped acid rain-causing chemicals into the air for three years.

According to the report, electricity suppliers AGL plan to use the same plant for its future gas field project near Campbelltown.

Documents discovered by 7News allege the plant illegally polluted over three years running from the Rosalind Park plant, saying the plant emitted 30 per cent more acid-rain causing sulphur oxides than allowed; and that it exceeded the limits for hazardous waste stored on site.

Correspondence between the Environment Department and the Rosalind Park plant obtained by 7News says:

"The long-running nature of these non-compliances is unacceptable and must be addressed."

AGL responded to the 7News investigation saying that the Environment Department's complaints had been addressed, claiming there was never any danger.

The electricity supplier has also confirmed that all safety requirements have been met at the plant.

Campbelltown locals are concerned about AGL's plans for the area, telling 7News that the 72 wells due to be constructed near suburban areas are unwanted.

"Council's stance on the wells is basically that we don't want them in our area, that's the nuts of it." says Paul Lake, Campbelltown Mayor.

According to 7News, opposition to the plan is echoed by the Department of Environment who say, "There is potential for future land use conflict."

The Catchment Authority is concerned about the proximity of a pipeline to water supply saying it could, "adversely affect the quality of the water in the Upper Canal"


"The issues raised by Channel 7 relate to superseded licence conditions which were modified in December 2010 in consultation with the EPA to reflect current EPA requirements. The plant now complies with these requirements which are monitored quarterly by external consultants.

"The previous levels were so low that it was difficult to confirm results in certified testing laboratories and in any event were well below any levels that would cause harm or environmental impact."

"The Rosalind Park facility is an excellent plant which meets the OEH's Environment Protection Licence conditions.

"In a letter to AGL regarding the new levels, the EPA noted: "The changes to the Sulphuric acid mist and sulphur trioxide limits reflect proper and efficient operation, will be achievable and will not adversely impact on local air quality in the surrounding environment".