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Pipeline damage adds to escalating concerns around Woodside’s dangerous Scarborough Project

Woodside’s $18 billion Scarborough gas project has been marred by yet another incident, with an offshore gas pipeline damaged during installation this week. The incident, which occurred off the Pilbara coast, has sparked safety concerns and echoes previous issues that have plagued the controversial project.

Woodside’s Scarborough Project has faced repeated delays and has been the subject of numerous legal challenges.

The Incident

On Monday night, the Castorone pipeline installation vessel experienced a loss of control of the pipeline during the installation process, resulting in a significant safety breach and necessitating the evacuation of workers. This marks the second serious safety incident on the vessel this month, with an incident on January 2 causing violent uncontrolled movement that broke the pipeline.

Woodside and their contractor Saipem face scrutiny for safety lapses, with the Offshore Alliance - the partnership between the Australian Workers’ Union and the Maritime Union of Australia that covers oil and gas workers - stating they have been raising concerns about the safety practices of the pipelay since the installation started last year.

‘Scarborough is dangerous in more ways than one’, peak body

Anna Chapman, Fossil Fuels Program Manager at WA’s peak environmental conservation body, Conservation Council of WA (CCWA), stated that the incident only adds to concerns, environmental and otherwise, about Woodside’s Scarborough Project.

“From the start, Woodside’s Scarborough gas project has been marred by controversy. The recent incidents demonstrate that we need a stronger regulatory environment provided by NOPSEMA to identify safety and environmental risks early, and amplify the urgency of reassessing the Scarborough project's viability.

“Fortunately, the two safety lapses this month have not resulted in injuries, but these incidents prompt the question: at what cost does this project continue? Stakeholders need to reconsider the wisdom of forging ahead with a venture that seems fraught with safety and environmental issues.

“The cracks in the viability of this project are becoming increasingly apparent, as we see that Scarborough is dangerous in more ways than one. Not only does this project continue to place worker safety at risk, this highly polluting, highly controversial and increasingly expensive project will do irreparable damage to native marine life and our climate.”




MEDIA INFORMATION: The Conservation Council of WA (CCWA) is the state’s foremost nonprofit, non-government conservation organisation representing nearly 100 environmental organisations across Western Australia. For more information, visit:

CONTACT: For any enquiries relating to this release, please call 0412 272 570

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