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Woodside (ASX:WPL) share price shrugs off latest threat to $16 billion LNG project

While LNG produces less greenhouse gas emissions than coal or oil, environmental concerns remain.
The post Woodside (ASX:WPL) share price shrugs off latest threat to $16 billion LNG project appeared first on The Motley Fool Australia. –

The Woodside Petroleum Limited (ASX: WPL) share price appears unfazed by a last-ditch legal manoeuvre by the Environmental Defenders Office acting on behalf of the Conservation Council of WA (CCWA).

Woodside shares are up 0.25%, despite news reported by the Australian Financial Review that the environmental group is seeking to derail the company’s massive $16.5 billion Western Australian Scarborough LNG project. The project is forecast to provide 30 years of LNG exports on completion in 2026.

We take a look at their objections and the response from the S&P/ASX 200 Index (ASX: XJO) oil and gas producer.

Is the Scarborough LNG project already approved?

Despite receiving numerous approvals, the environmental group believes Woodside’s offshore LNG development should not be allowed to go forward without first undergoing a federal environmental assessment.

As the AFR notes, the group believes the project and resulting LNG will produce greenhouse gas emissions “likely to have a significant impact on the heritage values of the Great Barrier Reef … and so require assessment under the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act”.

In a legal letter to Woodside CEO Meg O’Neil, the Environmental Defenders Office wrote:

Accordingly… CCWA considers that the development of the offshore component of the project is currently prohibited by, at least, ss12 and 15B of the EPBC Act, and requests that Woodside urgently comply with the obligation under section 68(1) of the EPBC Act to refer the project to the Minister for the Environment.

Woodside had a decidedly different take, responding that, “Woodside rejects the assertion by activists that there is significant environmental approvals risk of proceeding to a FID [final investment decision] for Scarborough at this time.”

According to Woodside, its development plans have been reviewed by the WA Environmental Protection Authority, the Australian Department of Agriculture, Water and the Environment, and the National Offshore Petroleum Safety and Environmental Management Authority.

A spokesman for the Department of Agriculture, Water and Environment, said (quoted by the AFR), “[the project] has been assessed at the Commonwealth level by the National Offshore Petroleum Safety and Environmental Management Authority”.

Woodside share price snapshot

The Woodside share price has struggled this year, down 3%. That compares to a 12% year-to-date gain posted by the ASX 200.

Over the past month, Woodside shares are down 13%.

The post Woodside (ASX:WPL) share price shrugs off latest threat to $16 billion LNG project appeared first on The Motley Fool Australia.

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More reading

Here’s why Woodside (ASX:WPL) is facing renewed investor scrutiny

5 things to watch on the ASX 200 on Friday

5 things to watch on the ASX 200 on Thursday

Woodside (ASX:WPL) share price lifts as company backs ongoing demand for LNG

5 things to watch on the ASX 200 on Wednesday

The Motley Fool Australia’s parent company Motley Fool Holdings Inc. has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool Australia has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy. This article contains general investment advice only (under AFSL 400691). Authorised by Bruce Jackson.

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