Lincoln ecology researcher sheds light on real price of gas

16 February 2023 | News

On The Conversation website, Lincoln University Associate Professor of Ecology, Tim Curran, says the Santos pipeline planned for Australia would destroy productive farmland and rare native grasslands.

As a plant ecologist, Dr Curran also maintains an interest in restoration ecology and wildlife management and his main field of expertise lies in using functional traits to understand how plants respond to extreme disturbance.

He says the Australian oil and gas giant Santos, which wants to build an 833km gas pipeline stretching from southern Queensland to Newcastle in New South Wales, has released details showing the project would traverse highly productive farmland, as well as valuable native vegetation.

"The pipeline would run underground. Even still, the proposed path is a real risk to threatened species and ecological communities, due to the need to clear a 30m-wide corridor to install the pipeline."

In January, the NSW government granted Santos authority to survey land along the route, with or without permission from landholders. 

"Many landscapes along the pipeline's path are already denuded of native vegetation," Dr Curran says. "The threatened ecosystems that remain, including native grasslands, must be protected."

Read the full article at The Conversation.