Interim Independent Expert Scientific Committee on Coal Seam gas and Coal Mining

Chemicals: human and environmental health

This theme addresses an issue of community concern regarding threats arising from the use and potential spill of chemicals used in fraccing fluids to public health through the cross contamination of drinking water supplies as a result of the interconnection of aquifers and surface waters. Particular attention will be paid to the unique Australian ecosystems in the priority regions. Research will also focus on occupational health and safety, public health, drinking water and ecotoxicity.

Project Title Project Description
Critical science review -
hydraulic fracturing
Hydraulic fracturing (fraccing) techniques, including chemicals, risks, toxicology and ecotoxicology reporting.
National assessment of chemicals associated with coal seam gas extraction This project is being led by the National Industrial Chemicals Notification and Assessment Scheme  and aims to develop an understanding of the occupational, public health and environmental risks associated with chemicals either used in or mobilised by hydraulic fracturing for coal seam gas in an Australian context, providing an evidence base for determining the appropriate management framework for these chemicals as part of the broader management of coal seam gas activities.