Santos GLNG, Thiess and Saipem Australia were awarded the 2014 Queensland Premier’s Innovation in Sustainable Technologies Award for the Narrows Crossing tunnel between Gladstone and Curtis Island.
The 4.3 kilometre undersea tunnel won the award as it provided the means for Saipem Australia to install the Santos GLNG gas transmission pipeline without disturbing the sea bed or other marine and coastal environment in the area.
The award was accepted last week by Narrows Crossing Tunnel project manager James Campbell.
“This award is fitting recognition of the innovative tunnel solution which eliminated the environmental disturbance associated with alternative methods such as dredging or trenching,” James said.
The project was also runner-up for the overall Premier’s Sustainability Award.
Santos GLNG vice president downstream Rod Duke congratulated the collaboration between Thiess, Saipem Australia and Santos in ensuring the environmentally safe delivery of the first under-sea, gas industry crossing to Curtis Island.
“It took more than 420,000 man-hours to complete the state-of-the-art tunnel and I commend the entire team for their outstanding work,” Duke said.
“This year is about delivering milestones across Santos GLNG, and we are particularly proud of the innovative way we built the marine crossing tunnel.
“Winning the Queensland Premier’s Innovation in Sustainable Technologies award and being a runner-up for the overall Premier’s Sustainability award is further proof of a job well done.”
Duke said that Santos GLNG would have first gas in the plant in 2015.
The tunnel was constructed using a Tunnel Boring Machine (TBM), which was named Rose-Ella by the children at the local Rosella Park State School, was around 100 metres long and weighed 277 tonnes.
The project employed a team of 75 people, which took around four weeks to complete the 3.45 metre under-sea tunnel that runs eight metres below the sea bed.
The TBM excavated approximately 55,000 cubic metres of earth which was used by the Gladstone Regional Council to rehabilitate an ash pond associated with a coal-fired power station.