Natural gas is an essential energy source, supplied to more than a million industrial and commercial gas users in NSW – such as hospitals, schools, businesses and residential customers.
The Newcastle Gas Storage Facility (NGSF) is an important link in NSW’s natural gas infrastructure, helping provide energy security and employment in the region. The facility gives the region a reliable supply of gas – meeting AGL's peak gas market requirements over winter and providing additional security of gas supply during disruption events.
A 5.5 kilometer long pipeline connects the gas storage facility to the receiving station at Hexham. The latter links the NGSF into the NSW gas network via the existing Wilton-Newcastle trunk pipeline.
The NGSF is primarily located in Tomago, and has a receiving station at Hexham, about 20 kilometers north-west of Newcastle, NSW. The land is large enough for ongoing operations and is appropriately buffered from residential areas.
This location was selected because of its proximity to:
- the Wilton-Newcastle trunk line of the NSW gas network (the northern-most point that the gas network currently reaches on the NSW coast)
- gas users, including industrial customers.
The NGSF stores and handles very large quantities of liquefied natural gas (LNG). Pipeline natural gas is converted to LNG by cooling it to -162°C and is then stored to meet peak domestic gas market requirements over winter and provides additional security of gas supply during supply disruption events. The plant is capable of processing up to 66,500 tonnes of LNG per year.
It includes an insulated, non-pressurised LNG storage tank capable of containing 30,000 tonnes or 63,000 m³ of LNG, equivalent to 1.5 petajoules (PJ) of natural gas, and an associated containment area.
The NGSF stores and handles very large quantities of liquefied natural gas (LNG). As the quantity of natural gas to be stored is above threshold amounts, it has been classified as a Major Hazard Facility (MHF) by the NSW Government.
Major hazard facilities include sites like oil refineries, chemical manufacturing plants, LPG facilities, and gas-processing plants and the NGSF is one of 39 major hazard facilities in NSW.
To ensure that safety is managed to the highest standard, the NSW Government has a regulatory framework for the control of MHFs. Under this regulatory framework, AGL has had to prepare and submit to Government a formally documented Safety Case, before it gained its MHF license. AGL’s Safety Case demonstrates how we safely manage and operate the site. It demonstrates the measures we have taken to minimise the likelihood of a major accident occurring, and documents the measures taken to minimise the consequences of any major accident in the unlikely event that it does occur.
- First gas arrives at AGL's Newcastle Gas Storage Facility
- NGSF fact sheet, January 2015
- AGL raises the roof on the Newcastle Gas Storage Facility
If you would like more information about the Newcastle Gas Storage Facility, please feel free to contact us via the following channels:
AGL Community Complaints & Enquiries Hotline: 1800 039 600
Mail: AGL Community Complaints & Enquiries, Locked Bag 3013, Australia Square NSW 1215
You can find out more about how AGL engages with the community here and access the Community Complaints and Feedback Policy here.
During construction of the NGSF, AGL consulted with the local community, landowners and local government through a Community Consultative Committee (CCC).
The CCC consisted of representatives from Newcastle City Council, Port Stephens Council, Tomago Van Park, Tomago Aluminium Company, Native Animal Trust Fund and Hunter Water Corporation. It was active for three years during the construction phase.
Minutes from all CCC meetings are available in the document tab above.
Following completion of the facility, AGL’s Community Relations Team engaged an Independent Chairperson, Lisa Andrews to create a Community Dialogue Group (CDG) as a way of enabling communication between the community and AGL.
Members of the group include representatives from the Hunter Region Botanic Gardens, Wahroonga Aboriginal Corporation, Port Stephens Council, Hunter Wildlife Rescue (NATF), Hunter Water Corporation, Port Stephens Koalas, Tomago Van Village and the Worimi Aboriginal Land Council. All members are expected to contribute constructively to the group’s discussions, attend around two meetings a year, and communicate information about AGL’s gas storage facility and broader AGL initiatives between the committee and the wider community.
Presentations and minutes from CDG meetings are available in the document tab above.
If you are interested in being involved with the CDG, please email Lisa Andrews at email@example.com. Or, if you have ideas about how AGL can improve engagement with the community, please call us on 1800 039 600 or via email at AGLCommunity@agl.com.au.
The NGSF Community Dialogue Group (left to right): Alex Fitzpatrick (AGL), Jill Dean (Hunter Wildlife Rescue), Lisa Andrews (Independent Chairperson), Audrey Koosmen (Hunter Wildlife Rescue), Dianne Ball (Wahroonga Aboriginal Corporation), Robert Beautement (Hunter Region Botanic Gardens), Geoff Dingle (Community Representative), Aaron Clifton (AGL).
AGL is proud to have been present at the Hunter Wildlife Rescue official opening in late November.
Back in 2015, we began our partnership with Hunter Wildlife Rescue by donating one of our old demountable buildings at Hexham to the group.
We have continued to work with the group to turn our old building into a home for Hunter Wildlife Rescue.
The last part of this journey was to officially open the building, now located at the Hunter Wetlands Centre.
The Raymond Terrace Soccer Club now has a large new BBQ thanks to support and sponsorship from AGL.
Bacon and egg rolls, fried onions and sausage sandwiches are an important part of weekend sport, and Raymond Terrace Soccer Club now has the equipment needed to meet the demand.
AGL Head of Government and Community Relations Tony Chappel said that AGL’s Newcastle Gas Storage Facility Community Relations team has been working with the Raymond Terrace Soccer Club to support and build the organisation.
“Local sporting clubs are an important part of any community, and AGL is delighted to support a growing club that encourages fitness, health and fosters community spirit in Raymond Terrace,” Mr Chappel said.
Raymond Terrace Soccer Club President Mr Peter Petryk said the new BBQ will be key to club canteen fundraising efforts, but also addressed some safety concerns.
“Getting a new BBQ was a priority for us this year, as our old one had burners not working, which can create a safety hazard.
“With registration prices increasing each year, our club aim for next season is to discount the first 200 children's registrations by $20 each.
“To do this we will need to raise $4000, and the new BBQ will certainly help us achieve our goal.
“We also have plans to purchase much needed new equipment for our club, plus we need trophies and other items for our end of season presentation days.
The Raymond Terrace Soccer Club has approximately 250 junior team members aged from 5 to 17 years, and over 145 all age and grade team members.
The Club recently celebrated their 60th Anniversary.
“The new BBQ arrived just in time for our Anniversary celebrations which was fantastic.
“Our Club has also been successful in securing the Newcastle Football Grand Finals this year, over the first weekend of September.
“All six fields will be used over the weekend, and we expect around 3000 spectators and players.
“The BBQ will be running flat out keeping up the supply of bacon and egg rolls in the morning, through to the steak and sausage sandwiches for the afternoon.
“The AGL team has been great to work with, and we look forward to our continued relationship into next season,” Mr Petryk said.
AGL’s Community Relations Team recently ran the BBQ for the Raymond Terrace Soccer Club’s Ladies Day.
The Club’s female teams played brilliantly in their bright pink socks, raising awareness for breast cancer. AGL donated the meat for the BBQ and helped to cook up a storm. All proceeds from the BBQ were donated to the McGrath Foundation.
During the day, AGL’s ‘Have your say’ board was on display. Members of the community voted that healthy lifestyles and wellbeing, as well as energy affordability, were the most important areas of the community that AGL can contribute to.
Check out some of the photos from the day from the Port Stephens Examiner.
On Saturday 27 May 2017, AGL’s Community Relations Team supported the Lions Club in running their BBQ for Hunter Life Education’s World’s Biggest Car Boot Sale at Newcastle Showground. At the BBQ, locals met our team and asked questions about NGSF and broader AGL activities.
Our involvement with Hunter Life Education and other community activities in the Greater Newcastle region is part of AGL’s ongoing commitment to local communities. It's a great way to foster dialogue about our operations and activities.
If your organisation would like to chat with our Community Relations team regarding an upcoming event, please contact us on 1800 039 600 or AGLCommunity@agl.com.au.
The NGSF Local Community Investment Program invests funds back into the community by way of financial support for community based initiatives, projects and events.
The program aims to:
- deliver community wide benefits
- encourage innovation in and support for issues of community significance
- support the work of community organisations.
The bi-annual Local Community Investment Program awards funding of up to $5,000 for community initiatives within the Port Stephens and Newcastle Local Government Areas. Applications for funding are assessed by members of the NGSF Community Dialogue Group.
The NGSF Local Community Investment Program application period for this round is now closed.
AGL is committed to protecting the environment and minimising our environmental footprint in the areas we operate, in collaboration with our stakeholders. Further details on AGL’s environmental commitment are available here.
The NSW Planning Assessment Commission (PAC) approved AGL's application to construct the NGSF in May 2012 under Section 75J of the Environmental Planning & Assessment Act 1979. This approval is subject to certain conditions (called 'conditions of consent').
PAC's approval incorporates the NSW Department of Planning and Infrastructure (now Department of Planning and Environment) assessment of, and satisfaction with, AGL's Preferred Project and Response to Submissions Report. This report was prepared and submitted by AGL on 12 September 2011 to address the public's comments on the Environmental Assessment (EA).
The EA was on public display from 24 June 2011 to 29 July 2011.
The conditions of consent, the EA Report and the Preferred Project and Response to Submissions Report are available on the DP&I's website.
This PAC approval and Modification to Approval provides AGL with state government permission to construct and operate the gas plant, pipeline, receiving station and associated and ancillary infrastructure.
On 18 July 2012, the project received conditional approval from the Commonwealth Department of the Environment. The Department confirmed the project is a controlled action under the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999.
All NGSF compliance documents are available in the document tab above.
All AGL Project Plans are available in the document tab above.
Our Environmental Protection Licence 20130 is available here.
For all other DPI approval documents, please visit the document tab above.
- Operations Environment Management Plan: Implementation Audit - December 2015
- Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act: Approval Compliance Notification - November 2015
- 2015 Winter Nest Box Monitoring - August 2015
- 6 Monthly Construction Compliance Report - June 2015
- Pre-Operations Audit Report - May 2015
- Post-Construction Road Report commissioned by AJ Lucas (April 2015)
- Post-Construction Road Report commissioned by IDM Partners (March 2015)
- 6 Monthly Construction Compliance Report - August 2014
- Nest Box Survey - August 2014
- 7th Quarter Audit Report - July 2014
- EPBC Statement of Compliance - July 2014
- SMEC's Stormwater Management Peer Review Report - June 2014
- 6 Monthly Construction Compliance Report - February 2014
- 6th Quarter Audit Report - April 2014
- SMEC Site Inspection - HDPE Liner Installation – January 2014
- Pre-Construction Road Report commissioned by AJ Lucas (January 2014)
- 5th Quarter Audit Report - December 2013
- SMEC Site Inspection - Spel Stormceptor Tank – November 2013
- SMEC Site Inspection - Package Pump Station – November 2013
- EPBC Statement Of Compliance November 2013
- SMEC Stormwater Management Peer Review Report – October 2013
- 4th Quarter Audit Report September 2013
- SMEC Site Inspection – 15 August 2013
- SMEC Site Inspection – 1 August 2013
- 6 Monthly Construction Compliance Report August 2013
- 3rd Quarter Audit Report June 2013
- SMEC Site Inspection – May 2013
- 6 Monthly Construction Compliance Report - February 2013
- 2nd Quarter Audit Report March 2013
- 1st Quarter Audit Report November 2012
- Independent Environmental Audit Report November 2012
- Pre-Construction Compliance Status Report - August 2012
- Compliance Tracking Program - 22 August 2012
- CBI Pre-Construction road condition report - 6 July 2012
- Pre-Construction Road Report commissioned by CB&I (June 2012)
- DPI approval of the CEMP for Low Pressure Pipeline
- DPI approval of Hazard and Operational Study (HAZOP) Phase 2
- DPI approval of Final Hazard Analysis Phase 2
- DPI approval of Fire Safety Study Phase 2
- DPI approval of the CEMP for Main Power Supply and Tomago to Hexham Pipeline
- DPI approval for Independent Environmental Representatives
- DPI approval of the Construction Environment Management Plan
- DPI approval of the Biodiversity Offset Strategy
- DPI approval of the Groundwater Management Programme
- DPI Approval for Staged Approach to Hazard Studies
- DPI Approval of Stage 1 Hazard Studies