Responsibly managing a shared resource
The sustainability of our operations relies on our ability to obtain the appropriate quality and quantity of water and to use this resource responsibly. Water risks and impacts experienced by our operations vary from region to region. Some sites are located in water scarce environments, others have to manage water excess, water quality or water discharge issues.
The social, cultural, environmental, ecological and economic values of water have also led to greater scrutiny of responsible water use and expectations from our stakeholders for improved resource stewardship.
Recognising the regional nature of our water risks, in FY2013, we introduced a five-year target requiring our assets with water-related material risks to implement projects on an annual basis to reduce their impact on water resources.
At the end of FY2017, all our assets that identified water-related material risks implemented at least one project to improve the management of associated water resources, consistent with performance over the course of the target period.
Our total water input (water intended for use) in FY2017was 283,900 megalitres, with 91 per cent defined as Type 2 (suitable for some purposes) or Type 3 (unsuitable for most purposes). This demonstrates our approach to utilising lower-quality water wherever feasible.
Onshore shale, safeguarding and managing environmental resources: United States
Producing gas from shale involves injecting water, sand and a small amount of chemicals under high pressure into the shale rock. This process is known as hydraulic fracturing. We are committed to be the safest company in the industry, protect the land where we operate, safeguard and manage our water resources, minimise air emissions from our operations and to be a good neighbour to our communities. We make publicly available the composition of hydraulic fracturing fluids, including chemicals, through the FracFocus Chemical Disclosure Registry.
Read more Responsibly managing hydraulic fracturing (PDF 176 kb)